Faces of NYCM: Sandy Truax Knits Hundreds of Hats and Slippers for Charity - NYCM Insurance Blog

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Jan 10, 2020

Faces of NYCM: Sandy Truax Knits Hundreds of Hats and Slippers for Charity

Sandy Truax laughs as the knitting needles click and clack together, furiously moving back and forth. A colorful hat continues to grow from the movement of the needles -- as if formed by magic. “Watching someone knit is like watching paint dry,” she jokes as she continues to craft her colorful apparel.

Sandy has been at NYCM Insurance for 32 years but she started knitting well before her time at the company. She first picked up the craft when she was 11 years old - having learned from her grandparents' neighbor - and for the past five years has been using her love of knitting to give to charity.

Sandy was first inspired to start knitting for charity when she got her Pekingese dog, Fidget. Knowing that Fidget needed to be socialized, she began taking her to Chase Nursing Home to interact with the residents. 

“Even on what seemed like the hottest days to me, those folks were always cold,” Sandy recalled. In an attempt to bring the residents some warmth, she started making slippers.

“The day I got there with slippers, some of the residents were already in bed for the evening. The director took a pair to one of the residents and had her stick her foot out to try one -- The lady pulled her foot back under her covers and wouldn't give the slipper back! That was the start of my attempting to keep the world warm.”

Since donating slippers to the nursing home, Sandy has expanded her charitable repertoire to include hats and mittens and has created over 300 items for charity. Sandy donates her items to the local community to organizations including Edmeston Central School, the Methodist Women of Edmeston, Chase Memorial Nursing Home and Rehab (now Chase Health), the Methodist Church of New Berlin, the Edmeston Rotary Christmas Giveaway, Burlington Flats Pre-School and the Edmeston Fire Auxiliary. She also donates items through our winter clothing drives at NYCM Insurance.

In 2019, Sandy made the commitment to knit and donate 200 hats to St. Jude’s Hospital. She realized that while she can’t cure St. Jude’s patients, she can at least offer her help in trying to keep the children warm with her knitting.

Aside from being incredibly thoughtful, Sandy is also dedicated down to the finest detail – using worsted weight yarn to create her cozy apparel, knowing that its durability will stand up to the test of time and hospital washing machines and dryers. Several NYCM employees have been inspired by Sandy’s charitable efforts and – in support – have offered up skeins of yarn and donations for purchasing materials to help her reach her goal.

“I’m lucky to have such supportive co-workers,” Sandy reflects. “NYCM Insurance believes in work-life balance more than any place else I have ever worked.”

Sandy’s feelings towards her co-workers are clearly reciprocated as Sandy is also a recipient of the Vision in Action Award – an award created at NYCM Insurance designed to recognize employees who go above and beyond in their work and interactions with customers. To win a Vision in Action Award, one must be nominated by one of their co-workers.

“I think my knitting will give me purpose when I retire,” Sandy laughs, thinking to the future. “Whether it’s making a hat for a child in their favorite sports team’s colors or donating to children in need, making something that I know will truly keep people warm means a lot.”

Join Sandy in her mission to keep the world warm by clicking on the button below and downloading a free knitting pattern to start making your own hats.

Original knitting pattern retrieved from Love Crafts.