Quilt Quarters instructor shares skills with Kenyan women

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From left, Kenyan women Beatrice, Emily and Penny learn from Lynn Summers during an Imani Workshop. (Submitted photo)

From left, Kenyan women Beatrice, Emily and Penny learn from Lynn Summers during an Imani Workshop. (Submitted photo)

By Mark Ambrogi

Lynn Summers is an accomplished quilter and instructor. Last month, she was able to share those skills as part of a mission to Kenya.

The Carmel resident visited a branch of the Family Preservation Initiative under AMPATH (Academic Model Providing Access to Healthcare) program. The branch is called Imani Workshops with the focus of teaching high-quality crafts to those who are HIV positive or have AIDS to generate revenue.

“It’s designed to give HIV positive women an opportunity to earn income through their skills,” Summers said.

The two-week workshop was in Eldoret in western Kenya last month. Summers was one of three women teaching three Kenyan women the art of appliqué and quilting.

“They will sell at the workshops, at the resorts in the area and through Global Gifts stores,” said Summers, adding there is a Global Gifts store in Nora Plaza in Indianapolis. “I’ll be sending them more things to learn that they can easily do on their own.”

Summers said she will do that by mail or send it with the next group to make the mission trip.

“They learned so fast and they were so eager to learn,” Summers said. “It was overwhelming how well it was received.”

This was Summers’ first visit to a Third World country.

“I’d love to do it again,” Summers said.

Summers, who has lived in Carmel for 11 years after moving from Massachusetts, has been quilting for more than 20 years. She is an instructor at Quilt Quarters in Carmel

Summers heard about the opportunity from Lea Anne Einterz, the wife of Dr. Robert Einterz, director of the AMPATH Consortium and director of Indiana University Center for Global Health. Lea Anne, a Zionsville resident, is one of Summers’ students in her quilting classes.

In 1989, Dr. Einterz co-founded Indiana University School of Medicine’s partnership with Moi University School of Medicine in Eldoret to provide health service, conduct health research and develop leaders in health care for both the U.S. and Africa.

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