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White Rock senior’s handcrafted toques bring ‘great joy’

June Young has continued her tradition of crocheting, donating winter hats for Surrey RCMP

June Young never imagined she’d be an active volunteer well into her senior years, but that is exactly the case for the White Rock woman – and many will be reaping the benefits of her heart-warming efforts.

On Tuesday (Nov. 29), Young delivered 250 toques that she crocheted this year, as well as a cache of clothing that she’d collected, to the Surrey RCMP’s annual warm-clothing drive.

The ‘Hats for the Homeless’ donation has been a tradition of Young’s for about five years; for her, a natural addition to the volunteering she was already doing for the Mounties at the RCMP’s South Surrey office.

READ MORE: Rosy look to White Rock senior’s ‘Hats for Homeless’ project

When the pandemic put the brakes on her in-person efforts for the RCMP, the handiwork – which she crafts while watching television – continued to be an enjoyable pastime.

In January of last year, she donated 265 of the hats, as well as 40 scarves; followed by a further 230 toques 10 months later.

Surrey RCMP Cpl. Vanessa Munn said Friday (Dec. 2) that Young went “above and beyond” this year, with her added donation of “multiple bags” of warm clothing.

Her hats are distributed by officers to vulnerable members of the community, Munn continued.

They “are not only practical but bring great joy to the recipients,” she said.

“There is something extra special about receiving a handmade gift, it conveys the message that someone truly cares.”

Young began volunteering at the South Surrey RCMP district office after moving to White Rock with her husband Gerald about two decades ago.

In an email this week sharing his wife’s latest work, her husband told Peace Arch News he “can’t help but admire my dear wife’s generosity.”

Young, noting she has volunteered “all my life,” said she feels “very honoured that at my age (nearly 80) I can still contribute to our community.”

“I will continue making my hats all through winter, as long as they have a need for them,” she added.

She noted that this year, she has also received knitted contributions from members of a knitting club at Whitecliff Retirement Residence. First contacted by a member in the summer, Young was to pick up a second donation of the ladies’ work this week.

Young said anyone wishing to donate wool for her ‘Hats for the Homeless’ project may email her at
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Tracy Holmes

About the Author: Tracy Holmes

Tracy Holmes has been a reporter with Peace Arch News since 1997.
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