Students Turn to Knitting for Stress Relief, Community Service

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Anah Khan

“It’s a fun way to learn something new, and it helps relieve stress. [People will gain] a new hobby, and also a way to help your community while social distancing,” Jambunath said.

You’ve probably seen pictures of a stereotypical granny sitting in a rocking chair by the fire, her knitting needles clicking away at a striped scarf for her grandson. 

However, such is not always the reality about knitting and needlework in general. People of any age can start knitting at any time.

In fact, seven or eight BHS students gather in the counseling office for bi-weekly meetings either to work on a knitting project or to learn a new skill. 

Members of Beachwood’s knitting club, led by seniors Vidula Jambunath and Maya Velazquez, practice a  range of needlework skills from crotchet to embroidery and use these skills to help their community outside of the high school. 

While knitting may seem intimidating at first, Jambunath emphasized that all it takes is patience and persistence. 

“I don’t think knitting’s hard, [because] when you start to try and get the hang of it, it might be a little difficult, but the more you practice, the better you’ll get,” she said. 

Furthermore, the knitting club doesn’t even have to be strictly about knitting. Velazquez emphasized that the main goals of the club are to help reduce stress for students and to bring friends together. 

Three years ago, [it started with] a few of our friends, and we were like ‘Ok, why don’t we just make this a club? We’ll have some time to chill out, do what we love, and spend time with each other.”

— Senior Maya Velazquez

“Three years ago, [it started with] a few of our friends, and we were like ‘Ok, why don’t we just make this a club?” Velazquez said. “We’ll have some time to chill out, do what we love, and spend time with each other.” 

Along with building skills and knowledge of needlework, knitting club hopes to contribute to the community beyond high school. 

Last year, three club members donated blankets to the Rape Crisis Center. 

“We are hoping to do another community service project. This year, we’re planning on doing scarves and hats,” Velazquez said. 

But as with all things, the COVID-19 pandemic essentially muffled the efforts of knitting club. 

On the other hand, the stress of the pandemic is all the more reason to take up knitting. 

Jambunath emphasizes that students should get involved in knitting club because it improves mental health. 

“It’s a fun way to learn something new, and it helps relieve stress. [People will gain] a new hobby, and also a way to help your community while social distancing” Jambunath said.