July 1, 2020

Kathy Kessler, an experienced instructor and seamstress of beautiful quilts, has donated sixteen of her own creations and co-creations to serve the cause of the Poweshiek Housing Coalition. Funds generated through an online auction of these quilts during the month of July will be collected and distributed by the Poweshiek County Housing Assistance Fund.

A “Housing Coalition” made up of individual citizens and representatives from Poweshiek County, the City of Grinnell, Grinnell-Newburg School District, Grinnell College, area ministerial and social service agencies, the Greater Poweshiek Community Foundation, and the Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation was formed in November 2019 to address the concerns of individuals and families in need of a place to call home.

One outcome of their discussions has been the formation of the Poweshiek County Housing Assistance Fund, established in March of 2019 and administered by the Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation (CDAF). Julie Gosselink, CDAF president and CEO, said “there is about $100,000 in annual unmet housing need in the county, so our short-term goal is to fundraise about half of that amount in order to begin distributing funds to those in need as soon as possible. This online auction will be a nice complement to the current fundraising already in place.”

Marilyn Kennett, a coalition organizer and director of Drake Community Library, states “A quilt can be a symbol of a warm home, which makes Kathy’s donation of these special quilts a very welcome gift. Dollars raised with the online auction will go towards improving access to housing and preventing homelessness in Poweshiek County.”

Individuals wanting to participate in the “A Stitch in Time”online auction of quilts need to complete an online bidder registration form and further instructions that can be found at the Ahrens Foundation’s website https://ahrensfamilyfoundation.org or at Drake Community Library’s website https://grinnell.lib.ia.us/a-stitch-in-time/. A colorful booklet is available to view as well displaying all sixteen quilts with details and sizes on each quilt.

The information provided in this form will allow the housing fund committee to identify winning bidders at the end of the auction and to proceed with contact and payment accordingly. Individuals can bid on as many quilts and as many times as one would prefer. Bidding will close for all sixteen quilts at the end of the month, July 31st, 11:59:59 pm.

Gifts to the Poweshiek Housing Assistance Fund may be made online at https://ahrensfamilyfoundation.org/partner-program-funds/ or mailed to CDAF at P.O. Box 284, Grinnell, IA 50112.