Bravery Bead Bowls - Home
While attending the 25th Anniversary Symposium of the American Association of Woodturners (AAW) in St Pauls, Minnesota, in 2011, an inkling of an idea was spawned. A few years past until the idea became a reality. In late 2016, the Grey-Bruce Woodturners Guild launched its Bravery Bead Bowls initiative.
Many years prior, the Womens' Auxiliary Volunteeers started the Bravery Beads program at Toronto Sick Kids Hospital. Kids undergoing treatment at Sick Kids receive colourful beads representing procedures which they experience. They string the beads together to make beautiful necklaces, a form of recording their journey. Depending on the complexity of their treatment, over time, patients can collect hundreds of beads.
The idea of the Bravery Bead Bowls program was to create beautiful woodturned containers for their Bravery Bead collections, and, to make this a win-win initiative for the makers of the Bravery Bead Bowls as well as the recipients. Most of the guild members had no experience with segmented woodturning, so the decision was made to use that technique in the creation of the Bravery Bead Bowls. This provided a valuable learning exercise for the guild members, in addition to producing the initial batch of Bravery Bead Bowls, which were delivered to Toronto Sick Kids Hospital in June of 2017.
Grey-Bruce Woodturners Guild was limited in its capacity to produce Bravery Bead Bowls so the Bravery Bead Bowl initiative was presented to other woodturning guilds, including demonstrations of making Bravery Bead Bowls. As such, other guilds have launched their own Bravery Bead Bowls initiative. The current list of participating woodturning guilds follows.
- Grey-Bruce Woodturners Guild (GBWG), Kincardine
- Kawartha Woodturners Guild (KaWG), Peterborough
- Simcoe Woodturners Guild (SWG), Barrie
- Waterloo-Wellington Woodturners Guild (WWWG), Waterloo
- Woodturners Guild of Ontario (WGO), Pickering
The Bravery Bead Bowls program has provided a valuable community outreach project within the guild which fosters a real kinship among the participating members. Members have a real sense of gratification knowing their hard work will help bring joy into a young child's life.