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New coordinator sought for yearly scarf distribution

| March 1, 2024

NEW PHILADELPHIA (WJER) (March 1, 2024) – The leader of the Scarf Project is planning to take a step back.

Toni Kaltenbaugh is looking for someone to take her place coordinating the program that culminates with a communitywide ‘scarf bombing’ each November. The 77-year-old says she’s not unwell. She just wants to make sure the effort outlives her.

“I’m hoping that I can get somebody in place at the end of this year, and that way next year I can  work with them and take them through any glitches they might run into and help them as much as I can throughout the next year.” 

The new coordinator will oversee every aspect of the program, working closely with site monitors and volunteer knitters to put scarves into the hands of people who need them on one Friday each November. 

“They’re also going to need to be able to solicit yarn donations. I contacted a lot of yarn manufacturers the first year. You need to be able to do that because a lot of the people who contribute scarves and finished products are people in nursing homes. They don’t have the ability to get out and get the yarn.”

The project has grown from 123 scarves and one location in 2016 to more than 2,000 scarves and 23 sites last year, so whoever takes over will need plenty of storage space. 

“They can find someplace that’s willing to accept them for them but they’re gonna need to pick them up and take them to their house to store them. And they need to secure a location for the Tuck, Tag, and Match event each year, which is a one-day event where they match scarves with hats and gloves. It just makes it easier for distribution when you do that.”

Anyone interested in the unpaid position should contact Kaltenbaugh at 330-432-1930 or through Facebook to set up an interview. She wouldn’t be opposed to letting a local church or civic group adopt the project if no one comes forward.  

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