Saskatchewan

Woman spreads joy to every household in Harris, Sask.

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic one woman has found a way to spread a little joy to every single home in the community. For the past few weeks, Kathleen Ritchie has been secretly creating personalized greeting cards for all the families in the village of Harris, Sask.

Kathleen Ritchie has created beautiful greeting cards for all the families in village

Kathleen Ritchie with her 120 greeting cards that she made for the people of Harris, Sask. (Photo courtesy Ron Joorisity)

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, one woman has found a way to spread a little joy to every single home in her community.

For the past few weeks, Kathleen Ritchie has been secretly creating personalized greeting cards for all the families in the village of Harris, Sask., which is about 80 kilometres southwest of Saskatoon.

"I know that this pandemic is really difficult for everybody and my little village has been a huge blessing to me," said Ritchie. "And so I wanted to do something to show them that I cared about them and to maybe cheer them up a little bit."

Ritchie is an avid crafter and designer of unique greeting cards.

"I just love to do it, so I knew that it was something that I would be able to accomplish," she said.

One of the greeting cards Kathleen Ritchie made for the people of Harris, Sask. (Photo courtesy Ron Joorisity)

Ritchie came to Harris from Calgary in 2016 and knew only one couple, Ron and Patricia Joorisity.

But she said the entire village opened its arms to her.

"[The Joorisitys] were the only people I knew," she said. "I came and it was such a welcoming and a beautiful place to live and everybody cares about everybody. 

Despite the COVD-19 pandemic, Kathleen Ritchie has found a way to spread a little joy to every single home in the community of Harris, Sask. Ritchie and her friend Ron Joorisity join Saskatchewan Weekend host Peter Mills to explain how and why she created 120 beautiful handmade cards. 11:54

"I'm on home oxygen so I'm not able to do a lot of stuff that other people do for the village. But I knew this was something that I could do for everybody."

After about 400 hours worth of work, Ritchie was able to deliver 120 personalized greeting cards.

Kathleen Ritchie [right] dropping off her greeting cards with postmaster Joanne Genest. (Photo courtesy Ron Joorisity)

And she added a handwritten note with each one that read:

Dear Friend,

What difficult, uncertain times we are in. It's hard for all of us. Really hard. Thank you to everyone for keeping Harris free of COVID-19.

No one knows for how long, but if we hang in there we will get through this.

ALONE TOGETHER!

Stay safe,

Kathleen.

Ron Joorisity said the village feels the same love toward Ritchie.

"She's well-known in the community because she rides her little scooter with a flag on the back and everyone knows Kathleen and waves at her," Joorisity said.

"Before COVID-19 days she provided coffee to many of the retirees on certain days of the week in our New Horizons Centre. She's just really been a real treat to have into our community and everyone knows her and loves her."

Kathleen Ritchie's handwritten note that accompanies each greeting card. (Photo courtesy Ron Joorisity)

He said her cards are so creative that he has some of them framed in his house.

"These cards are absolutely beautiful and will not only brighten the days of many of our citizens, but will, I'm sure, serve as a memento of this challenging time in our lives," he said.

Ritchie is happy with the way the cards turned out and hopes they have brought a smile to the residents of Harris.

"I'm excited. I said to Ron, 'I hope some of the people keep them.' Ron said, 'I don't think you're going to see them blowing around the streets of Harris.' "

You can see more of the greeting cards on Twitter @TweeterMillsCBC and on the CBC Saskatchewan Facebook page.

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