Your Amazing Neighbours

Do you know how amazing some of your neighbours are? 

This week, we were inspired to learn that some of our musical neighbours are making an amazingly positive impact around the world.  Our neighbour’s band is Izzy’s Troop and the musicians are Tom Poole, Roberta Travis, Diana Slater and Phyllis Wheaton.  Phyllis wrote a book called In the Mood for Peace that tells the story of the IZZY DOLL PROGRAM.

On 21 Jun 1994, Mcpl MARK ROBERT ISFELD was killed while removing land mines near Kakma, Croatia carrying out UN peacekeeping duties with the CANADIAN MILITARY ENGINEERS on his third peacekeeping tour within a two and one half year period.  Mark took a great interest in the CHILDREN of the area, and Mark’s mother Carol knitted little “DOLLS” from scrap wool for Mark to give to the children.  This started when, in one of his letters home to his parents, he sent a picture of a doll half-hidden in the rubble of a building and expressed concern for the girl who must have lost it. His Mom, Carol Isfield was deeply moved and began to crochet little dolls, each one complete with a blue U.N. beret or a Canadian Military uniform, each one small enough to fit into a soldier’s pocket. She sent a box of them to Mark who, along with his fellow soldiers, began to distribute these “Izzy Dolls” to the children they met in Croatia.  The troops of 1CER named them “IZZY DOLLS” after Mark was killed, and Carol continued to knit them for the members of the regiment to give out in Mark’s memory.

Today, over a million knitted and crocheted IZZY DOLLS have been made by Canadian women and students across Canada, including thousands made by volunteers in Perth.  These Canadian IZZY DOLLS are collected and distributed by two main sources: the International Community for the Relief of Starvation and Suffering (ICROSS) Canada, and the Order of the Eastern Star. Izzy Dolls are given to children around the world who are suffering due to war, famine, natural disasters, etc. These are innocent victims and they find great comfort in hugging an Izzy Doll given to them either by a Canadian soldier, doctor or relief worker.

Through music, IZZY’S TROOP raises awareness and plays for peace.  This week, they played a concert in Perth called IN THE MOOD FOR PEACE, to honour and pay tribute to the peace efforts of the Canadian Forces, veterans and hundreds of volunteers involved in the IZZY DOLL PROGRAM.

This film clip was edited and produced by Scott Fairweather from the Canadian Landmine Foundation. He used original footage of Canadian Military Engineer Mark Isfeld removing landmines during his deployment in the former Yugoslavia. The lyrics were originally a poem written by Mark’s mother Carol Isfeld, for her son’s birthday. The music was composed by Edmonton’s Jan Randall. Phyllis recorded Carol’s song for her album ‘In Harms Way’ in 2007 and gave permission for it to be used for this video.

Thank You to the amazing neighbours around the world who are making a difference through beautiful music and by making IZZY DOLLS!

Elizabeth Rose Diamond Lantern

 

Comments

  1. Sandra Freeman says:

    What a day & evening it was in Perth and I was proud to be a part…..such a small thing to do for our soldiers & the children
    Thanks Shirley for organizing such and event
    Sandra & Mike Freeman

    • Elizabeth Rose says:

      Sandra,
      Small things cause a ripple effect and become great things. You and your team are wonderful role models for showing us that we can all plant the seeds of peace and grow paradise here on earth. Thank you!