Please email instruction@knitwell.org to schedule an Individual Knitting Instruction appointment.

with Project Knitwell

Knitwell in the Cloud

During these stressful times, we need the wellness benefits of knitting now more than ever.

Project Knitwill invites you to join Knitwell in the Cloud, a new program offering private, one-on-one knitting lessons via Zoom. It’s a safe, effective way to knit and learn.

Who is this for?  Beginner knitters and those who already know how to knit but need help with a project.

How long are the sessions? 45-60 minutes. You will have up to 4 lessons with your instructor.

What equipment do I need to participate? A smartphone or tablet (iPad, etc.)  and the free Zoom app downloaded on the device you will use.

Do I need to get my own supplies?  No — Project Knitwell will provide you with what you need.


Knitwell in the Cloud is an ongoing program with rolling registration. Please email instruction@knitwell.org  or call 703-249-9112 and mention that you heard about the program through Smith Center.

If you’re looking to meet up with other knitters, consider connecting with K2tog. K2tog events are not formal lessons, but rather are casual get-togethers where everyone brings their knitting projects and chats about different knitting-related topics. Anyone can register by emailing k2together@knitwell.org, even if they have never participated in a previous PK program.

About Project Knitwell

Project Knitwell

Project Knitwell offers knitting as a tool to promote wellness and help people cope with stressful situations at more than a dozen hospital and community settings.

All of Project Knitwell’s programming is provided by volunteers, and services and supplies are provided free of charge to the people we serve.


About the Project Knitwell Volunteers

About Ilene Gast

Ilene Gast

I have been knitting since childhood, learning when I received a knitting kit as a gift.  Knitting allows me to combine color and texture, transforming long strings of yarn into aesthetically pleasing, functional items.  I knit all manner of objects, but my favorites are wild colored socks and unusually shaped shawls.

Although finishing a knitted object is satisfying, it is secondary to the process of knitting. The rhythm of knitting is relaxing; it never fails to relieve stress.  At the end of graduate school, I not only completed a degree, but also created a series of “dissertation sweaters.”  Knitting also lets me take leave of myself.  When I am knitting for someone else, which is often, I can virtually spend time with that person.  Or, if I use yarn acquired in a special place, I am transported back in time and space.  Add portability to these benefits—I can take it with me!

However, most of all, I enjoy sharing the art and craft of knitting with others. I am fortunate to have discovered Project Knitwell, an organization dedicated to bringing the benefits of knitting to people in stressful situations.  I am doubly grateful to be part of the Schar ISC Artist in Residence program.

Please email instruction@knitwell.org to schedule an Individual Knitting Instruction appointment.

with Project Knitwell

Knitwell in the Cloud

During these stressful times, we need the wellness benefits of knitting now more than ever.

Project Knitwill invites you to join Knitwell in the Cloud, a new program offering private, one-on-one knitting lessons via Zoom. It’s a safe, effective way to knit and learn.

Who is this for?  Beginner knitters and those who already know how to knit but need help with a project.

How long are the sessions? 45-60 minutes. You will have up to 4 lessons with your instructor.

What equipment do I need to participate? A smartphone or tablet (iPad, etc.)  and the free Zoom app downloaded on the device you will use.

Do I need to get my own supplies?  No — Project Knitwell will provide you with what you need.


Knitwell in the Cloud is an ongoing program with rolling registration. Please email instruction@knitwell.org  or call 703-249-9112 and mention that you heard about the program through Smith Center.

If you’re looking to meet up with other knitters, consider connecting with K2tog. K2tog events are not formal lessons, but rather are casual get-togethers where everyone brings their knitting projects and chats about different knitting-related topics. Anyone can register by emailing k2together@knitwell.org, even if they have never participated in a previous PK program.

About Project Knitwell

Project Knitwell

Project Knitwell offers knitting as a tool to promote wellness and help people cope with stressful situations at more than a dozen hospital and community settings.

All of Project Knitwell’s programming is provided by volunteers, and services and supplies are provided free of charge to the people we serve.


About the Project Knitwell Volunteers

About Ilene Gast

Ilene Gast

I have been knitting since childhood, learning when I received a knitting kit as a gift.  Knitting allows me to combine color and texture, transforming long strings of yarn into aesthetically pleasing, functional items.  I knit all manner of objects, but my favorites are wild colored socks and unusually shaped shawls.

Although finishing a knitted object is satisfying, it is secondary to the process of knitting. The rhythm of knitting is relaxing; it never fails to relieve stress.  At the end of graduate school, I not only completed a degree, but also created a series of “dissertation sweaters.”  Knitting also lets me take leave of myself.  When I am knitting for someone else, which is often, I can virtually spend time with that person.  Or, if I use yarn acquired in a special place, I am transported back in time and space.  Add portability to these benefits—I can take it with me!

However, most of all, I enjoy sharing the art and craft of knitting with others. I am fortunate to have discovered Project Knitwell, an organization dedicated to bringing the benefits of knitting to people in stressful situations.  I am doubly grateful to be part of the Schar ISC Artist in Residence program.

Please email instruction@knitwell.org to schedule an Individual Knitting Instruction appointment.

with Project Knitwell

Knitwell in the Cloud

During these stressful times, we need the wellness benefits of knitting now more than ever.

Project Knitwill invites you to join Knitwell in the Cloud, a new program offering private, one-on-one knitting lessons via Zoom. It’s a safe, effective way to knit and learn.

Who is this for?  Beginner knitters and those who already know how to knit but need help with a project.

How long are the sessions? 45-60 minutes. You will have up to 4 lessons with your instructor.

What equipment do I need to participate? A smartphone or tablet (iPad, etc.)  and the free Zoom app downloaded on the device you will use.

Do I need to get my own supplies?  No — Project Knitwell will provide you with what you need.


Knitwell in the Cloud is an ongoing program with rolling registration. Please email instruction@knitwell.org  or call 703-249-9112 and mention that you heard about the program through Smith Center.

If you’re looking to meet up with other knitters, consider connecting with K2tog. K2tog events are not formal lessons, but rather are casual get-togethers where everyone brings their knitting projects and chats about different knitting-related topics. Anyone can register by emailing k2together@knitwell.org, even if they have never participated in a previous PK program.

About Project Knitwell

Project Knitwell

Project Knitwell offers knitting as a tool to promote wellness and help people cope with stressful situations at more than a dozen hospital and community settings.

All of Project Knitwell’s programming is provided by volunteers, and services and supplies are provided free of charge to the people we serve.


About the Project Knitwell Volunteers

About Ilene Gast

Ilene Gast

I have been knitting since childhood, learning when I received a knitting kit as a gift.  Knitting allows me to combine color and texture, transforming long strings of yarn into aesthetically pleasing, functional items.  I knit all manner of objects, but my favorites are wild colored socks and unusually shaped shawls.

Although finishing a knitted object is satisfying, it is secondary to the process of knitting. The rhythm of knitting is relaxing; it never fails to relieve stress.  At the end of graduate school, I not only completed a degree, but also created a series of “dissertation sweaters.”  Knitting also lets me take leave of myself.  When I am knitting for someone else, which is often, I can virtually spend time with that person.  Or, if I use yarn acquired in a special place, I am transported back in time and space.  Add portability to these benefits—I can take it with me!

However, most of all, I enjoy sharing the art and craft of knitting with others. I am fortunate to have discovered Project Knitwell, an organization dedicated to bringing the benefits of knitting to people in stressful situations.  I am doubly grateful to be part of the Schar ISC Artist in Residence program.

Please email instruction@knitwell.org to schedule an Individual Knitting Instruction appointment.

with Project Knitwell

Knitwell in the Cloud

During these stressful times, we need the wellness benefits of knitting now more than ever.

Project Knitwill invites you to join Knitwell in the Cloud, a new program offering private, one-on-one knitting lessons via Zoom. It’s a safe, effective way to knit and learn.

Who is this for?  Beginner knitters and those who already know how to knit but need help with a project.

How long are the sessions? 45-60 minutes. You will have up to 4 lessons with your instructor.

What equipment do I need to participate? A smartphone or tablet (iPad, etc.)  and the free Zoom app downloaded on the device you will use.

Do I need to get my own supplies?  No — Project Knitwell will provide you with what you need.


Knitwell in the Cloud is an ongoing program with rolling registration. Please email instruction@knitwell.org  or call 703-249-9112 and mention that you heard about the program through Smith Center.

If you’re looking to meet up with other knitters, consider connecting with K2tog. K2tog events are not formal lessons, but rather are casual get-togethers where everyone brings their knitting projects and chats about different knitting-related topics. Anyone can register by emailing k2together@knitwell.org, even if they have never participated in a previous PK program.

About Project Knitwell

Project Knitwell

Project Knitwell offers knitting as a tool to promote wellness and help people cope with stressful situations at more than a dozen hospital and community settings.

All of Project Knitwell’s programming is provided by volunteers, and services and supplies are provided free of charge to the people we serve.


About the Project Knitwell Volunteers

About Ilene Gast

Ilene Gast

I have been knitting since childhood, learning when I received a knitting kit as a gift.  Knitting allows me to combine color and texture, transforming long strings of yarn into aesthetically pleasing, functional items.  I knit all manner of objects, but my favorites are wild colored socks and unusually shaped shawls.

Although finishing a knitted object is satisfying, it is secondary to the process of knitting. The rhythm of knitting is relaxing; it never fails to relieve stress.  At the end of graduate school, I not only completed a degree, but also created a series of “dissertation sweaters.”  Knitting also lets me take leave of myself.  When I am knitting for someone else, which is often, I can virtually spend time with that person.  Or, if I use yarn acquired in a special place, I am transported back in time and space.  Add portability to these benefits—I can take it with me!

However, most of all, I enjoy sharing the art and craft of knitting with others. I am fortunate to have discovered Project Knitwell, an organization dedicated to bringing the benefits of knitting to people in stressful situations.  I am doubly grateful to be part of the Schar ISC Artist in Residence program.

This program has been postponed. Please check back for future program dates.

with Donna Smith, JD

Compassion & Choices DC

Compassion and Choices is the largest and oldest non profit focused on choice and care at the end of life. Our goal is to educate all communities so they are empowered to make informed healthcare decisions so they can advocate for themselves and loved ones. In this class Donna Smith will discuss the importance of Advance Care Planning.


About Donna Smith, JD

Donna Smith is an accomplished professional with over twenty years of experience in political consulting, legislative advocacy, public affairs, policy and program management.
Donna was the Chief of Policy and Community Programs for eight years at the Maryland Department of Aging. She led a team of program managers that implemented aging statewide programs for the aging and their caregivers. She was also detailed to work on the White House Conference on Aging in as a public relations specialist.
In 2014 she was a political consultant to the Donna Edwards Senatorial campaign where she focused on organizing women and seniors.
Donna has been employed by Compassion and Choices (C&C) for 4 years. She is the National African American Director and the Director of Political advocacy for DC and Maryland. In this capacity she led the campaign to pass end of Death with Dignity legislation in both the District of Columbia (the legislation passed in Feb. 2017) and Maryland, where she organized and engaged over 17,000 volunteers to help pass legislation and acted as a spokesperson on behalf of C&C.
A graduate of Tuskegee University and George Washington Law School, she has one son and resides in Laurel, MD.

Please email Kiersten at kiersten@smithcenter.org to register.

with Wendy Miller

This ongoing healing circle will focus on the unique needs of those experiencing the loss, recently or not, of a spouse or partner. No matter where you find yourself in your journey with grief, this chance to be with others who have lost a spouse or partner can lead to profound learning and healing.

Come join us in our healing circle of collaborative conversations.


What is a Healing Circle?

Healing Circles bring together small numbers of people impacted by a condition or circumstance to share experiences and harvest collective wisdom.  Healing Circles is a peer-led process by which people support each other through deep listening and shared learning. When working at its best, this collaborative conversation model leads to authentic and deep connectivity and can create wisdom and healing for participants.

This Healing Circle meets Bi-Monthly on Thursdays from 4:30pm – 6:00pm.

Upcoming sessions:

  • April 1 & 22
  • May 6 & 20
  • June 3 & 17

About Wendy Lynn Miller, Ph.D.

Moving here many years ago from the SF Bay Area, my relationship with Commonweal led me to Barbara Smith Coleman. I am proud to have been part of an early group of people with Shanti Norris who met with Barbara to envision the cancer retreats, a healing center, and gallery for Smith Center. Years later when my late husband Gene Cohen was facing metastatic prostate cancer, he went to Commonweal for his cancer retreat. The gift of community support, reflection, and care guided the choices we made through the many years of living with cancer in our family body. I became a widow in 2009.

Wendy Miller is an expressive arts therapist, artist, and writer living in Kensington, MD. In 2016, she published the book, Sky Above Clouds: Finding our way through creativity, aging, and illness, about her life and work with her late husband. It is a spiritual treatise on love and creativity during life’s major transitions.

Please email Kiersten at kiersten@smithcenter.org to register.

with Wendy Miller & Larry Kanter

This ongoing healing circle will focus on the unique needs of those experiencing the loss, recently or not, of a spouse or partner. No matter where you find yourself in your journey with grief, this chance to be with others who have lost a spouse or partner can lead to profound learning and healing.

Come join us in our healing circle of collaborative conversations.


What is a Healing Circle?

Healing Circles bring together small numbers of people impacted by a condition or circumstance to share experiences and harvest collective wisdom.  Healing Circles is a peer-led process by which people support each other through deep listening and shared learning. When working at its best, this collaborative conversation model leads to authentic and deep connectivity and can create wisdom and healing for participants.

This Healing Circle meets bi-monthly on Thursdays from 4:30pm – 6:00pm.

Upcoming sessions:

  • March 4 & 18
  • April 1 & 22
  • May 6 & 20
  • June 3 & 17

About Wendy Lynn Miller, Ph.D.

Moving here many years ago from the SF Bay Area, my relationship with Commonweal led me to Barbara Smith Coleman. I am proud to have been part of an early group of people with Shanti Norris who met with Barbara to envision the cancer retreats, a healing center, and gallery for Smith Center. Years later when my late husband Gene Cohen was facing metastatic prostate cancer, he went to Commonweal for his cancer retreat. The gift of community support, reflection, and care guided the choices we made through the many years of living with cancer in our family body. I became a widow in 2009.

Wendy Miller is an expressive arts therapist, artist, and writer living in Kensington, MD. In 2016, she published the book, Sky Above Clouds: Finding our way through creativity, aging, and illness, about her life and work with her late husband. It is a spiritual treatise on love and creativity during life’s major transitions.

About Larry Kanter

My late wife, Alex Todorovich, passed away in 2009 from breast cancer. My work with the Smith Center began in 2007 when Alex and I attended the Center’s week-long retreat, which marked a turning point in our understanding of what it means to really live, to love life, and to live in the embrace of a healing community. After Alex’s passing the Center’s Hisaoaka Gallery mounted a show of Alex’s art entitled “How to Leave a Well-Traveled Road” which documented her life, her fears, her loves and the path she chose at its end.

Larry Kanter is a graphic designer living in Washington, DC and is a Smith Center friend and an ardent supporter of the Center’s work.

Please email Kiersten at kiersten@smithcenter.org to register.

with Wendy Miller & Larry Kanter

This ongoing healing circle will focus on the unique needs of those experiencing the loss, recently or not, of a spouse or partner. No matter where you find yourself in your journey with grief, this chance to be with others who have lost a spouse or partner can lead to profound learning and healing.

Come join us in our healing circle of collaborative conversations.


What is a Healing Circle?

Healing Circles bring together small numbers of people impacted by a condition or circumstance to share experiences and harvest collective wisdom.  Healing Circles is a peer-led process by which people support each other through deep listening and shared learning. When working at its best, this collaborative conversation model leads to authentic and deep connectivity and can create wisdom and healing for participants.

This Healing Circle meets bi-monthly on Thursdays from 4:30pm – 6:00pm.

Upcoming sessions:

  • March 4 & 18
  • April 1 & 22
  • May 6 & 20
  • June 3 & 17

About Wendy Lynn Miller, Ph.D.

Moving here many years ago from the SF Bay Area, my relationship with Commonweal led me to Barbara Smith Coleman. I am proud to have been part of an early group of people with Shanti Norris who met with Barbara to envision the cancer retreats, a healing center, and gallery for Smith Center. Years later when my late husband Gene Cohen was facing metastatic prostate cancer, he went to Commonweal for his cancer retreat. The gift of community support, reflection, and care guided the choices we made through the many years of living with cancer in our family body. I became a widow in 2009.

Wendy Miller is an expressive arts therapist, artist, and writer living in Kensington, MD. In 2016, she published the book, Sky Above Clouds: Finding our way through creativity, aging, and illness, about her life and work with her late husband. It is a spiritual treatise on love and creativity during life’s major transitions.

About Larry Kanter

My late wife, Alex Todorovich, passed away in 2009 from breast cancer. My work with the Smith Center began in 2007 when Alex and I attended the Center’s week-long retreat, which marked a turning point in our understanding of what it means to really live, to love life, and to live in the embrace of a healing community. After Alex’s passing the Center’s Hisaoaka Gallery mounted a show of Alex’s art entitled “How to Leave a Well-Traveled Road” which documented her life, her fears, her loves and the path she chose at its end.

Larry Kanter is a graphic designer living in Washington, DC and is a Smith Center friend and an ardent supporter of the Center’s work.

Please email Kiersten at kiersten@smithcenter.org to register.

with Wendy Miller & Larry Kanter

This ongoing healing circle will focus on the unique needs of those experiencing the loss, recently or not, of a spouse or partner. No matter where you find yourself in your journey with grief, this chance to be with others who have lost a spouse or partner can lead to profound learning and healing.

Come join us in our healing circle of collaborative conversations.


What is a Healing Circle?

Healing Circles bring together small numbers of people impacted by a condition or circumstance to share experiences and harvest collective wisdom.  Healing Circles is a peer-led process by which people support each other through deep listening and shared learning. When working at its best, this collaborative conversation model leads to authentic and deep connectivity and can create wisdom and healing for participants.

This Healing Circle meets bi-monthly on Thursdays from 4:30pm – 6:00pm.

Upcoming sessions:

  • March 4 & 18
  • April 1 & 22
  • May 6 & 20
  • June 3 & 17

About Wendy Lynn Miller, Ph.D.

Moving here many years ago from the SF Bay Area, my relationship with Commonweal led me to Barbara Smith Coleman. I am proud to have been part of an early group of people with Shanti Norris who met with Barbara to envision the cancer retreats, a healing center, and gallery for Smith Center. Years later when my late husband Gene Cohen was facing metastatic prostate cancer, he went to Commonweal for his cancer retreat. The gift of community support, reflection, and care guided the choices we made through the many years of living with cancer in our family body. I became a widow in 2009.

Wendy Miller is an expressive arts therapist, artist, and writer living in Kensington, MD. In 2016, she published the book, Sky Above Clouds: Finding our way through creativity, aging, and illness, about her life and work with her late husband. It is a spiritual treatise on love and creativity during life’s major transitions.

About Larry Kanter

My late wife, Alex Todorovich, passed away in 2009 from breast cancer. My work with the Smith Center began in 2007 when Alex and I attended the Center’s week-long retreat, which marked a turning point in our understanding of what it means to really live, to love life, and to live in the embrace of a healing community. After Alex’s passing the Center’s Hisaoaka Gallery mounted a show of Alex’s art entitled “How to Leave a Well-Traveled Road” which documented her life, her fears, her loves and the path she chose at its end.

Larry Kanter is a graphic designer living in Washington, DC and is a Smith Center friend and an ardent supporter of the Center’s work.

Please email Kiersten at kiersten@smithcenter.org to register.

with Wendy Miller & Larry Kanter

This ongoing healing circle will focus on the unique needs of those experiencing the loss, recently or not, of a spouse or partner. No matter where you find yourself in your journey with grief, this chance to be with others who have lost a spouse or partner can lead to profound learning and healing.

Come join us in our healing circle of collaborative conversations.


What is a Healing Circle?

Healing Circles bring together small numbers of people impacted by a condition or circumstance to share experiences and harvest collective wisdom.  Healing Circles is a peer-led process by which people support each other through deep listening and shared learning. When working at its best, this collaborative conversation model leads to authentic and deep connectivity and can create wisdom and healing for participants.

This Healing Circle meets bi-monthly on Thursdays from 4:30pm – 6:00pm.

Upcoming sessions:

  • February 4 & 18
  • March 4 & 18
  • April 1 & 22
  • May 6 & 20
  • June 3 & 17

About Wendy Lynn Miller, Ph.D.

Moving here many years ago from the SF Bay Area, my relationship with Commonweal led me to Barbara Smith Coleman. I am proud to have been part of an early group of people with Shanti Norris who met with Barbara to envision the cancer retreats, a healing center, and gallery for Smith Center. Years later when my late husband Gene Cohen was facing metastatic prostate cancer, he went to Commonweal for his cancer retreat. The gift of community support, reflection, and care guided the choices we made through the many years of living with cancer in our family body. I became a widow in 2009.

Wendy Miller is an expressive arts therapist, artist, and writer living in Kensington, MD. In 2016, she published the book, Sky Above Clouds: Finding our way through creativity, aging, and illness, about her life and work with her late husband. It is a spiritual treatise on love and creativity during life’s major transitions.

About Larry Kanter

My late wife, Alex Todorovich, passed away in 2009 from breast cancer. My work with the Smith Center began in 2007 when Alex and I attended the Center’s week-long retreat, which marked a turning point in our understanding of what it means to really live, to love life, and to live in the embrace of a healing community. After Alex’s passing the Center’s Hisaoaka Gallery mounted a show of Alex’s art entitled “How to Leave a Well-Traveled Road” which documented her life, her fears, her loves and the path she chose at its end.

Larry Kanter is a graphic designer living in Washington, DC and is a Smith Center friend and an ardent supporter of the Center’s work.