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PADUCAH — They take it loop by loop. 

"I've been doing it about every day now. It is very therapeutic," said Kimberley Cowsert.

She is one of about 10 local women are loom knitting hats for people who need them, including homeless people trying to stay warm in winter and cancer patients losing their hair. 

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"It just helps pass the time," Cowsert said. 

These four women are not matching by choice. Pink jumpsuits are the uniforms for female inmates at McCracken County Jail. 

Cowsert said she learned how to loom knit when she was previously locked up. Now she's back and teaching other women.

"Hopefully I'm not in here very long, but I know that as long as I am, I am going to do what I can to give back in the best way that I can," Cowsert said. 


From 7:30 in the morning to 4:30 in the afternoon, they're making hats. They can make six to eight hats per day. Their original goal was to make 50, and they've surpassed that.

"I like it a lot," said 19-year-old inmate Savannah Lee. "It really helps us get out of our head and help people in need as well."

This is Lee's first time in jail and hopefully her last. She has a few more months left. As the saying goes, idle hands are the devil's workshop.

"It helps us sleep, and it really helps us with our mindset and knowing we are helping other people when they're in need," Lee said. 

In the six weeks since the program started, McCracken County Jailer David Knight said he's seen a difference. "They'll realize their actions do impact someone else and even good actions impact someone else."

Spending hours together every day has made more than hats. 

"I hope to see all of them on the streets, and I hope this is the type of activity that we'll be doing instead of you know what got us in here," said Cowsert. 

Loop by loop, they're creating purpose for their situation. 

Knight said they will donate the hats to the Baptist Health Paducah Ray & Kay Eckstein Regional Cancer Center and the Guess Foundation, which gives winter garments to local people in need.

The yarn is donated to the inmates, and the looms were paid for out of commissary funds. Knight says the program costs nothing for the taxpayers.