Good ideas never get old and the Forbes Handicraft Centre is living proof, celebrating its 45th anniversary this week. Three Forbes women took the initiative in 1971 to convert a good idea into reality and today just over 100 members ranging from 21 to 95 years are still benefitting. “It is a big achievement to reach 45 years, including surviving the 10 year drought,” said Kathy Bray, Publicity Officer.
“From the very beginning the idea way to give local and country women an outlet for their work and an association with other craft people,” she said. Profits have always been donated to local charities or deserving causes, and according to Kathy this is still the ethos of the group today.
Over the years a variety of classes and workshops have been held to expand members’ skills. “It is the wish of our group to continue to serve the community for many years,” said Kathy, although there is a feeling that craft making is dying. Kathy and other members see hope in their grandchildren, who are interested in learning crafts. “Even if one child in a family picks up the skills, we might keep it going.” It is the aim of many members to teach their grandchildren to carry on crafting.
“People still love home made items,” said a member. The most popular items at the centre are baby wear, seasonal items, plants, baked goods, preserves and fresh fruit and vegetables.