John Felton sends off the latest load of beanies knitted by residents of Akooramak.
John Felton sends off the latest load of beanies knitted by residents of Akooramak. Shannon Newley

Beanies mean so much to Afghans

A LUXURIOUS box of knitted love is being shipped from Warwick to Afghanistan as we speak.

The lovely ladies at Akooramak have bundled up a stack of handmade beanies, which will be handed out to Afghani children and soldiers serving overseas.

Former soldier Johno Felton said the small items meant a lot to the kids, who often had very little else.

"In these countries where everything is mud and bricks and there is one meal a day, these beanies are great and they're a status symbol," Mr Felton said.

The women have been part of the program for the past two years and Mr Felton said it is greatly appreciated by serving soldiers.

Returning soldiers often make a special trip to Akooramak to meet with the ladies on the end of the knitting needles.

Soldiers will certainly be feeling the local love over the next few months, with construction of Christmas care packages set to get under way again soon.

The packages are filled with goodies to make a soldier's life a little easier, but Mr Felton said there was one item that was sought after more than anything else.

"The thing the troops love more than anything is the cards from the kids," he said.

Over the past couple of years, Warwick students have taken the time to create a Christmas card for a soldier, filled with a heartfelt message.

Mr Felton said it was great to see schools get behind the idea and soldiers.

"There are a lot of touching little stories on the cards and they get messages like 'keep your head down Digger' and 'thumbs up'," he said.

Even the bomb detection dogs are thought of in care packages, receiving their own Christmas cards from the kids and tasty treats.


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