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Thursday, February 2, 2023



Nine years ago, philanthropist, actress and ‘arts angel’, Carolyn Steyn accepted a challenge to make 67 blankets for the needy in time for Nelson Mandela Day. The challenge was issued by none other than the late President Nelson Mandela’s PA, Zelda la Grange, and Carolyn quickly agreed.

What started out as a challenge, a gift and a Facebook plea has blossomed into an international movement for good. In South Africa alone, ‘KnitWits for Madiba’, as volunteers are affectionately known, have made and distributed over 120,000 blankets and many thousands of scarves. These hand-made items – made with love – are donated to children and adults who are disabled, homeless, elderly and otherwise in need of real warmth during the winter months. 67 Blankets also has branches in other countries around the world.

In just nine years, 67 Blankets has smashed several Guinness World Records, most recently for the world’s longest scarf at over 29 kilometres in length. In 2022, Carolyn Steyn, who has been bestowed with many honours over these last nine years, received notable recognition for her contributions to philanthropy, the arts and media from French President, Emanuel Macron, when he made her a Knight of the French National Order of Merit.

67 Blankets KnitWits offer an open invitation to those interested to a Valentine’s knitathon at Springside Café in Hillcrest, KwaZulu-Natal on February 15, 2023, from 09h00 until 12h00. Knitted and crocheted squares will be joined together to make blankets for this year’s #LocalBlanketsIsLekka winter campaign.

The organisation also handed out 30 blankets to the iKhethelo Children’s Village, an orphanage in Botha’s Hill, where these bright, colourful blankets will keep 30 little children warm during the cold winter months.

As part of the festivities, over 80 blankets already made by Highway KnitWits will be on display in all their multi-coloured glory. All blankets and squares made by KZN residents will be donated to the needy after a spectacular display event on June 10, 2023 at a venue to be disclosed.

If you are in the upper Highway and would like to get involved or make a donation to 67 Blankets group, contact Sue Hubach on 079 999 2443 or email

KZN members of 67 Blankets meet regularly at various venues. Anyone who would like to learn to knit or crochet is also welcome to attend any of these events. 67 Blankets is asking the people of KZN to donate wool, squares and adult-sized blankets to keep needy people warm this winter.

For more information visit Facebook › 67blankets