YUKON, Okla. - The sound of sewing machines fills the air at The Sewcial Club in Yukon, where people of all ages and genders gather to learn how to sew.
You will also hear the patient voice of Valerie Parker, teaching different stitching techniques - all free of charge.
Valerie chose to turn her business into a nonprofit, donation-based class so that people of all incomes could share her joy of sewing.
Along the way, she chose to create another element called "The Sewcial Initiative," where students donate their handmade creations to the needy.
"The first month that we did the initiative, she partnered with the Homeless Alliance and so we did scarves, and we did hats and mittens for the homeless," Brenda Goolsby said. "They sewed stockings in December for children at the Children's Center, they made baby blankets for babies at Baptist Hospital."
For her good deeds, Brenda nominated Valerie for a $400 Pay it 4Ward award from First Fidelity Bank's Michelle Alleman.
Brenda handed the money to a shocked Valerie and said, "We wanted to honor you for all the hard work that you do for these kids and for the community, so on behalf of News 4 and First Fidelity Bank, here is 1, 2, 3, and $400."
"Oh my gosh, I don't know what to say, thank you guys!" Valerie said. "I am speechless, I don't know what to say!"
The students in attendance gave Valerie a standing ovation, before they went back to their sewing machines to work on yet another project.
"This month we are doing special needs, we're making bibs for the older children for the Children's Center," Valerie said of the initiative she's so very proud to have created. "I think that it's changed me as a person. It's just been a huge blessing," she said smiling.
Pay It 4Ward is sponsored by First Fidelity Bank.