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Quilts-R-Us donates over 30 quilts to F.I.S.H.

December 16, 2015
By ED FRANKS ( , Pine Island Eagle

About two dozen women got together at the Matlacha Community Center last week to present F.I.S.H. (Fellow Islanders Sending Help) with more than 30 hand-made quilts. The quilts will be given to mothers with newborn babies and seniors.

Quilts-R-Us began 26 years ago in 1988 and has been donating quilts for over 20 years. "

There are still a few of us original members left," Dolores Ambrose said. "The ladies start making quilts in January of every year. Then at this time, just before Christmas, we donate them to F.I.S.H. The quilts are given to families in need as part of their Basket Brigade. Basket Brigade provides assistance for Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas baskets.

Article Photos

Quilts R-Us members line up with F.I.S.H. volunteers to show the donated quilts.


Carol Lutz has been a F.I.S.H. member for over 20 years.

"I've never seen any organization do such personal work with people," Lutz said. "F.I.S.H. helps people with rent, their mortgage, gas and electric, with their car and whatever is needed. We will talk with the moms to find out what their child really wants for Christmas and if we can we get that special gift for the child. It's one thing to receive a gift but it's more special to get the gift you really want."

F.I.S.H. is a completely volunteer organization where all of activities are initiated from the homes of volunteers. There is no central office or paid staff and the majority of funds come from Pine Island and Matlacha. There is never a charge for any F.I.S.H. service and services are provided regardless of the economic status of clients, except for financial assistance.

F.I.S.H. provides: non-emergency transportation to medical facilities, grocery store, pharmacy, bank, etc., to individuals with no other access to transportation; mobility equipment to lend: wheelchairs, walkers, etc.; special needs: emergency assistance for rent, utilities, medical, etc.; respite: relief to non-paid, primary caregivers for approximately 4 hours, once a week; in-touch: contact with homebound individuals either by phone or home visits; and as lead agency in the Pine Island "Basket Brigade" Program.

For additional information about F.I.S.H., call 239-283-4442 or visit



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