Auschwitz Survivor Knits Afghans For Women’s Shelter

The 90-Year-Old Uses Knitting As Therapy

A 90-year-old lady from Montreal has been knitting afghans for a local women’s shelter as a means to help the community, but also as therapy.

Liselotte Ivry is a survivor from Auschwitz with a passion for knitting that has been with her all her life.

After suffering a fall and going through hip surgery, getting back to her life was tough. She managed to go over that rough patch by knitting.

The hardest part was that she kept on dreaming she was back in the concentration camp and her life was in continuous danger.

The main beneficiary of the beautiful afghans Liselotte is knitting is the Auberge Shalom pour femmes shelter.

This charity work is a long time project for the Auschwitz survivor who has made hundreds of afghans so far. The latest batch consisting of 29 afghans was offered to the shelter residents on International Women’s Day.

For the women housed by the shelter, receiving such gifts means a lot since they know there is a community out there, wishing to help. For people like Liselotte is a way of offering something to the community.

“I think anything you do with your hands is good … and if I am nervous, the knitting kind of calms me,” Liselotte says, regarding her lifelong passion.

When she was a little girl, she learned how to knit and crochet, and these favorite pastimes managed to help her even through the darkest times.

Her idyllic childhood was interrupted by the ascension of nazism in Germany. Together with her mother and brother, she was sent to Auschwitz. Her mother died of illness and malnutrition, while her brother was sent to the gas chambers.

She still remembers how she offered her brother a pair of mittens just before the day he died.

“Where I am going, you don’t need mittens,” were the last words she ever heard from her brother.

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