#KnitForJacinda: New Zealand PM's pregnancy sparks knitting movement

Close up of a female hands knitting pink woolen threads

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News about Ms Ardern’s pregnancy has sparked a knitting movement across the country

A New Zealander has kicked off a knitting movement inspired by the news that Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is pregnant.

Ms Ardern announced last week that she and her partner are expecting their first child this June.

In response, Heather McCracken called on Twitter for Kiwis to #KnitForJacinda and donate their creations to charity.

The hashtag quickly spread online as people shared their knitwork.

Ms McCracken, who currently lives in the US, told the BBC she had no idea that so many people would get behind her idea.

“I was just happy about the news and felt inspired to make a little gift. It was immediately followed by the idea that it would be more appreciated [by] a baby who was more in need,” she said.

“I’m quite an average knitter so I’m challenging myself to do nice things. Now that I’m publicly accountable I have to follow through!”

And it was not just New Zealand – people elsewhere wanted to get involved too.

Many others were also inspired to post pictures of their knits to Twitter.

MP Deborah Russell said she was starting work on her third piece – a tiny hat.

“I’ve made a couple of little hats so far but once I’ve run out of the yarn I’m using I’ll start on crib blankets,” she told the BBC.

“I’ll keep on making pieces all winter, there’ll be plenty of babies needing them.”

People have been encouraged to send their knits to the children’s department at Middlemore Hospital in Auckland.

Ms Ardern has not revealed the gender of her baby, saying that she didn’t want to be overwhelmed with “gender-specific clothes.”

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