Taking up a new hobby during quarantine is common, but Bob Rutherford has been knitting long before the COVID outbreak. This is a man that knows the importance of a hobby, and how to build it into a non-profit business.
Bob started his hobby while he was acting as the caretaker for his wife. He was a retiree that was spending most of his time taking care of her when his son suggested taking up a hobby in his spare time. More than a knitter he considers himself an inventor, so he made a machine that could knit socks.facebook.com Source: facebook.com
But this wasn’t just any machine making a few pairs, he was making socks by the thousands. He would make so many that his son started delivering them to the local homeless shelter.facebook.com Source: facebook.com
When the socks became such a hit, he decided to name his little company, so Socks by Bob was born. Now they serve homeless shelters all over Canada.
When his wife passed away he started knitting even more and began making endless tubes for tube socks that he eventually had to enlist more help. With three of his retiree friends, they have a system worked out where everyone has a job from manning the machine, to sewing, right down to delivery.facebook.com Source: facebook.com
Bob is usually in charge of the machine that spits out 4 pounds of continuous tubing. His latest machine spins 90 times per second! Next his friend George cuts each tube to size, making 16 pairs per 4 pound tube. Then the process is wrapped up with his friends Glynn and Barney hemming and sewing the tubes into actual socks.facebook.com Source: facebook.com
The whole non-profit is run solely by these 4 friends. The best part is, half of the yarn they use is donated by a company called Custom Woolen Mills that has taken a liking to Bob’s endeavor. The rest of the yarn is bought with donations or money Bob’s son has raised.facebook.com Source: facebook.com
Last year alone they made more than 2,200 socks, and this year they surpassed 10,000 total!facebook.com Source: facebook.com
“Find a purpose. Find something that needs to be done and do it.” is just one of the tokens of wisdom Bob has to offer young people. At 92 years old he is still going strong and so are his friends. Bob’s good deeds and positive outlook on life are enough to inspire anyone to take up a hobby and change the world.
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