After over a year of scheming with Sewing Seeds International and the regional government, Grace and Cesar's dream of a sewing school has finally been made reality. It may be the first step toward something much bigger- a technical training school- depending on forthcoming government cooperation.
After so many ups and downs with the locale, personnel, machines, funds and even furniture, it was truly a divine act that brought us all together to inaugurate the first set of classes on Monday.
Our first and second projects- a drawstring bag and child's outfit.
Our school is called "Semillas de Esperanza" (Seeds of Hope), as we hope that the new skills each student learns will give them the hope of more solid earnings to support their family. At the end of each day I have the privilege to share a short evangelistic devotional with the class, sewing seeds of a deeper and truer hope.
This first week has been a rough battle for some of our students. The women and man enrolled in the class are all over the board: field workers who have never touched delicate machinery to seamstresses who are looking to broaden their skill set. We have grandmothers, new mothers, and a couple of young singles.
Each project is demonstrated by our incredible teacher Sylvia, translated by Grace and filmed by yours truly in the hopes of using the same projects for future classes (if we can secure government funding). Each step leaves the ladies intimidated but excited to see their work coming together bit by bit.
These bags have been the most difficult project by far because of fabric, but they are all thrilled with how they turned out. It't the perfect bag for going to market.
I can't wait to see what the next week will look like. Even though the team is still here, I can't wait for them to leave and come back just to see what will be going on in February and April when everyone returns for the intermediate and advanced classes. What a beautiful program this is. Thank you Sewing Seeds International- thank you for your patience, for not giving up on our town despite all the challenges.