Thimble Club kicks off a new year and new beginnings

The Thimble Club is now meeting in Valley Gospel Chapel’s (VGC) Fellowship Hall. Jodi Thomas photo
The Thimble Club is now meeting in Valley Gospel Chapel’s (VGC) Fellowship Hall. Jodi Thomas photo

This summer the Thimble Club, an Anza Valley original philanthropic service group, will be celebrating 105 years of community service. This January’s meeting was held at their new home base at Valley Gospel Chapel’s Fellowship Hall which will afford the group a more flexible schedule to hold more events and to add back their second monthly club work meeting.

General monthly meetings are held the first Thursday of each month at 11:30 a.m. Each meeting consists of a $5 luncheon, club business, fun and games and an informative guest speaker will come to talk about something of importance to the community. Up until recently a second meeting was held on the third Thursday of the month for fellowship and to work on group projects. The second meeting will no longer be held due to the rise in rental costs of the Anza Community Hall where the group had met for decades before the change.

Unlike its name implies, TC is a not a sewing based group but rather a philanthropic service group that over the years has seen the needs of the community and figured out a way to meet them. They have provided everything from a paramedic van and heart defibrillators to a fire truck and so much more that the community needed throughout the 105 years the group has been in existence. TC members and their families, years ago, also helped build the community halls – one in Terwilliger now known as the VFW and the one in town, the Anza Community Hall. They, along with the Anza Lions Club formed in the mid-1970s, had been caring for the hall the best they could up till a few years ago, when a new board came into being.

Now the ladies host various fundraisers throughout the year like the bake sales at the gymkhanas and the Anza Days Breakfast. Anza Citizen Patrol, Anza Lions Club, From the Heart Christian Women’s Ministries, Christian Men’s, Food for the Faithful Food Bank, Anza Civic Improvement League (they take care of Minor Park and Little Red School House), Boy Scouts, 4-H and several scholarship funds are just a few are area groups they support. The ladies also make lap quilts and deliver them personally to veterans at the veteran’s hospital in Loma Linda. To make this all possible through these lean times, the ladies’ goal is to raise as much money as possible by keeping operating expenses low. It should be also noted that it is the TC ladies that form a coalition to oversee the CCP program that helps out those who need help with their Anza Electric Co-op bill.

During the January meeting President Sharron Chambers and Annie Ashby shared some very important information. Chambers’ talk was on being prepared and why. She even shared some freeze-dried yogurt and corn that had a 25-year storage shelf life when unopened. Chambers also shared several manufactures of these freeze-dried foods and a list of needs for a “Grab and Go” bag and other survival needs if a shortage or emergency happens so we can survive out here in our rural area. The cans were made by a company called Thrive and can be found online at and Costco also has ready-made emergency survival kits for sale, she said.

Ashby is on the Anza Citizens Patrol and after a meeting on what to do in an active shooter situation, her sergeant asked if she would share that info with others back home.

TC is also looking for new ladies to join them with new ideas to help grow the club. To do this, TC will be hosting an informative ‘Open Free Women’s Luncheon’ to explain who the group is and what they do in hopes of enticing new membership. The luncheon is scheduled for April 8.

The at the next TC meeting Feb. 2, at 11:30 a.m., the Thimble Club will honor ladies who have been TC’s Past Presidents, nine in all. Lunch will be served

TC’s new address is VGC 43275 Chapman Road, in the Terwilliger area of Anza. Lunch begins at 11:30 a.m. and will be followed by the meeting. Cost of lunch is $5. No sewing required. For more information, call Chambers at (619) 206-1268.

Look in this week’s AVO for articles inspired by Chambers’ and Ashby’s talks on ‘Emergency Foods and Survival Kits’ and ‘What to do in an Active Shooter’s Situation.’

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