BELOW: For the last two weeks, 91-year-old Betty Wicks has been knitting little coats for lambs out west.
BELOW: For the last two weeks, 91-year-old Betty Wicks has been knitting little coats for lambs out west. Marc Stapelberg

Ballina nan, 91, comes to rescue of drought-stricken lambs

ONE Ballina nan has turned her hobby into generosity by knitting tiny jumpers for drought-stricken lambs in the hope it saves their lives.

After seeing pictures of lambs in coats on her daughter's "modern phone" 91-one-year old Betty Wicks decided to join hundreds of other knitters across the country and donate hand-knitted jumpers to the Facebook campaign Lamb Jumpers "Helping our Farmers".

The project was launched to help drought-stricken farmers in central NSW keep their stock warm.

"I felt sorry for the lambs and immediately wanted to help," Mrs Wicks said.

"I also read an article in Woman's Day where the little lambs were starving and freezing, because the mothers were dying from the big dry, so it feels good to help out."

Mrs Wicks said she was ready to send her first seven lamb jumpers to the Coonabarabran Times who have put their hand up to be a donation point for the campaign.

"I thought, if knit seven and it works out I'll make more," she said

"It's just a hobby for me ... I just can't sit here all day, my husband passed away two years ago.

"I'm really happy doing it for the lambs and I hope they send me two of them to adopt.

"I was talking to the CWA ladies in Casino, who are also doing it, but I'm doing this off my own back."

While Mrs Wicks was taught how to knit by her mother on their Fernside farm as a little girl, she only became an avid knitter several years ago.

"My grandson passed away from cancer so I started knitting socks for the Cancer Council," she said.

"Since my husband's been gone I find I'm knitting much more. I do really enjoy it."

Since its launch at the end of July, Lamb Jumpers "Helping our Farmers" have received thousands of knitted jumpers.

Its Facebook page offers different patterns and a list of places for knitters to drop off their creations for dispersal to farmers.



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