Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Women's Sewing Center

Following the development of the San Mateo Empowerment project, some of the mothers of students attending Holy Cross Anglican School were looking for a way to get more involved and contacted Kim Shackelford who spearheaded the San Mateo Project. They ended up with the idea of a sewing group to make uniforms at a reasonable price for the community and provide employment opportunities for the mothers. Vernon Wilson worked his magic and had machines donated and volunteer groups have brought materials and teachers to help the women learn the new skills. The Center started in June of 2011 and now has 8 women involved.

As St. Luke's ECW learned more about the project, they worked hard to support it. Joyce Avery suggested applying for a grant from the Diocesan ECW and the Millennium Goals Committee for the Center. We received a grant of $1200 US which we brought down with us when we came.
John, Joanne and Joyce presenting the check to the Co-Chair of the Sewing Center.

Some of the members with the check. They were delighted!

John being shown the "books".
Joanne Hooker has spent most of the week
working with the women on some new skills.
Their workspace is where Mr. Freddy's workshop used to be. Our group did some of the prep work when we were here last Feb. The group is now independent of the school and have been given this space. John sat down and listened to their ideas of how they might use some of the money we had brought.
The room has individual pressing tables on one side and a couple of shelves on the back wall.
As well as some nice racks to store their product.

They were happy with all the new material and supplies.
Joanne got her "Grandma" fix with this little guy!
One of the project Joanne brought was a backpack bag based on the blue Duke bag in the last picture. We had brought down several bolts of Disney fabric and this little girl was thrilled with her Princess bag! The group hopes to make more to sell.

The decision's made...new shelves and roof! That will still leave over half the grant money for new machines.
Doug designed the shelves and drawer unit.

The ladies ordered the wood that was delivered the next day...
Doug, Wayne and Robert went after it!
Shelf #1
Robert explaining the supports to Wayne
Shelves up and supports going in!
Filled in a flash!
Trimming the box for the drawers.
Framing the drawers.

Final sanding before fronts...
drawer fronts going on...
Almost done!
Last measurement...
In she goes...
Mission 1 Accomplished - Great Job Team 1!!
Happy Ladies.

The roofing was ordered so Team 2 could finish that project.Monday morning Scott, Bob and Mr. Freddy
started to loosen the old roofing in preparation
for the new roof...that didn't arrive today...
But it was here Tues morning so they went to work!
Up comes the old...
Down goes the new...
That's one good looking roof!
Mission 2 Accomplished!
Great Job Guys!

But that's not the end of the good news for the Women's Sewing Group...on Monday, Lorenzo Blanco, a local tailor, came to school to look at the broken machines and try to fix them. He returned on Tuesday and began making pants patterns for the boys uniforms with a much easier technique for the fly zipper.
God is surely watching over this group of hardworking women.

1 comment:

Adam said...

Now, these ladies would be more excited to sew with all their new shelves and roofs. There's nothing like achieving success through hard work and dedication. It's so nice to see everyone working together as a team.

-Adam Waterford