Vandalism on Kamloops's North Shore destroys gifts made for the needy | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Vandalism on Kamloops's North Shore destroys gifts made for the needy

The remains of knitted scarves under a tree that was burned in an act of vandalism in Kamloops.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/ Niki Dawson Davis

A burned tree is all that remains following an act of vandalism that took place on the North Shore in Kamloops earlier this week.

The tree had been decorated with warm scarves and toques by a woman who has been knitting them for two decades to help the less fortunate in her community.

The tree stands in front of Exposed Wax Art Studio, a business run by Niki Dawson Davis. She said she arrived at work Oct. 19, to find the burned tree and a few burnt scraps of knitted scarves on the sidewalk.

“I was heartbroken,” Davis said. “I had only just met the woman the day before when she was hanging up the scarves. I thanked her for her kindness. It was a brief interaction but her act of kindness brightened my whole day.”

Davis said the woman had put six or seven scarves on the tree.

“Someone must have come by after business hours and set the scarves and tree on fire,” she said. “Here she took time and effort to put them out for whoever needs them and someone destroys her gifts she made from the heart.”

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Cathy DuVall is the woman who knits the scarves and toques. She said she started gifting warm knits to the needy roughly twenty years ago after giving scarves to three girls who were out walking in the cold. This year she has made 270 scarves and 140 toques that she is hanging on trees on Tranquille Road during cold months.

“I must give credit to the people giving me the yarn to do it otherwise it wouldn’t be possible,” DuVall said. “The population is growing and there is always a need for warm clothes.”

Duvall responded to the news of the vandalism of her knits with compassion.

“I feel sorry for the person who did this because who knows what was going on in their life to make them feel they had to do that,” she said. “Many are in bad situations and don’t know how to deal it. I went through that as a child and was able to change the narrative after some time, but some people never get a chance to do that.”

A tree that was burned on the North Shore in Kamloops.
A tree that was burned on the North Shore in Kamloops.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/ Niki Dawson Davis

Davis said acts like this hurt everyone sharing space on the North Shore.

“People are trying to do good and improve our streets and then this happens and drags us all back down,” she said. “There is so much negativity already, we don’t need this. As a business owner I want to be smiling and happy for my clients and provide a safe, happy place. I hope the woman knows a lot of us appreciate her efforts and are saddened by this.”

To contact a reporter for this story, email Shannon Ainslie or call 250-819-6089 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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