Sewing with perspective – A&R sewing schools in Tanzania: Jane´s Orphanage
A&R Textil is supporting two sewing schools in Arusha/ Tanzania. Thanks to them, women in need there have the opportunity to create a means of existence for themselves and their small families. We were on site, visited the two sewing schools, and were impressed by the life stories of sewing students and their confident foresight.
The sewing school at Jane´s Orphanage has only been in existence for a few months. For Jane, the Tanzanian founder of the orphanage, education and training play an essential role. It is very important to her that later the girls can take care of themselves and are independent. The idea to offer sewing lessons for the young women inspired her.
A&R Textil has financed the establishment of the sewing school in an orphanage room. The room was cleared out and tidied up, the walls were painted, and old mechanical sewing machines were purchased and set up. Since the electricity supply in Tanzania leaves much to be desired or in some places does not even exist, these sewing machines – antiques for us in Europe – are a good choice.
The older children regularly receive sewing lessons from Isaac, a patient elderly sewing teacher. The laughter of small children penetrates from outside, while patterns are drawn on the blackboard in the classroom and the students diligently practice on the sewing machine. They proudly mend their clothing and the clothing of their “brothers and sisters” and sew their own garments; among other things, school uniforms which had to be purchased in former times.
At present there is an idea that in the future the students will also sew accessories such as bags or cuddly toys and sell these items in a small shop in Arusha. We are keeping our fingers firmly crossed for their project!
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