Photo credit: Beacon Photo/Kate Wowsh

Story originally published in The West Volusia Beacon

After Orlando Modern Quilt Guild President Alissa Lapinsky decided to make quilts for those affected by the June 12 shootings at Pulse in Orlando, she put out a call on social media for quilting pieces. Not long afterward, Lapinsky was inundated with responses from all over the world.

"That night it happened, we put a call out," Alissa said. ""Nine hours later, when I woke up, I had emails from Australia, Canada and the U.K. - in addition to other regional [quilting] guilds asking what we wanted and what we needed, and offering to help."

Lapinsky is collecting quilt blocks, tops, and finished quilts, specifically with bright-colored hearts with light-colored backgrounds. "I chose the heart blocks to symbolize love," Alissa said. "We are giving them to survivors and victims and anyone affected by the Pulse shooting."

As of July 9, Alissa has received more than 90 finished quilts, more than 1,000 quilt blocks, and around 35 quilt tops. With the quilt blocks and tops she has received so far, she said, her 85-member quilting guild and other volunteers will be able to put together roughly 110 more quilts.

She said her guild, in coming days, plans to visit the hospital where several victims of the June 12 shootings are still recovering, to drop off quilts for them.

Although Alissa didn't know anyone affected in the shootings, she couldn't help but want to do something to show her love and support for the victims. "Quilts kind of make you feel loved, and cover you and comfort you," Alissa said. "It might bring them a little bit of comfort."

The original plan was to construct 102 quilts for victims of the shootings, but thanks to the outpouring of support, Lapinsky said, the guild will now also use the materials to make about 100 more quilts, which participants plan to donate during Pride Week in Orlando in September.

Those looking to donate quilts, blocks or tops are asked to do so by August 15, so that the quilting team can send out finished quilts by September 15, Lapinsky said. Donations can be made to Alissa Lapinsky at A List Salon at 106B S. Woodland Blvd. in DeLand.