Knitters turn out despite COVID

Guardian Pharmacy has hailed its 22nd year of the Guardian Angel Knitting for Good program a success, following positive engagement with this year’s social-led campaign

Despite COVID-19 restrictions impacting the collection of knitted garments, the program in partnership with St Vincent de Paul Society attracted interest from Australians of all ages, serving more than two million combined impressions, with those aged 55+ most likely to get involved.

Close to seven in 10 (68%) of those who expressed an interest in 2020’s knitting program were return visitors, indicating an eagerness to once again put their knitting skills to task and help those most vulnerable in our communities.

While this year’s knitters are not yet able to donate their items due to COVID-19 restrictions, Head of Guardian, Kurt O’Brien, comments that the results of the campaign suggest that 2021 will be bigger and better.

“Many of us have been seeking a bit of social connection and new ways to occupy our time during lockdown, and better still, our Guardian Angel Knitting for Good program helps us to spread a little bit of warmth and look after the most vulnerable in our community,” said Mr O’Brien.

“Due to some COVID-19 related factors, garment drop off boxes were not available this year, however it was amazing to see just how excited this year’s Guardian Angels were to knit beanies, scarves, jumpers and gloves, for those less fortunate and get involved in the program.

“We are encouraging our Guardian Angels to hang on to their garments while we work with Vinnies to coordinate a safe collection,” he said. 

The Guardian Angel Knitting Program follows a string of other community-centric initiatives from Guardian, with Mr O’Brien most recently attending the virtual Vinnies CEO Sleep Out.

“At Guardian, we know the strength of our offering is in the community – we are at the frontline of community healthcare, so it’s important that our social engagement initiatives are embedded into the fibre of our business,” added Mr O’Brien.

The Guardian Angel Knitting Program is an important part of the pharmacy’s wider community centric support services including the Guardian Club rewards program, medicine home delivery, in-pharmacy health checks and professional screening services.

The e-knitting book was supported by a wide range of social and media activity, including video assets, an online Facebook group, as well as eDMs to encourage participation.

The Guardian Pharmacy Facebook page was also taken over by knitters during the campaign, who shared their own creations to help inspire new and experienced knitters to connect with one another.

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