October 25, 2012

Ankaase Bags

My friend from college is an adoption advocate and now works with a group who support school kids in a village called Ankaase in Ghana. Her name is Lisa Tresch, and she and her daughter went to Ghana last year to meet a boy there that her church group had been sponsoring. When she went those kids permeated into her bones it seems and she's been a full time volunteer for the sponsoring organization ever since. 
She knew I made patterns, so when she got the idea to develop a product that the local group of Ankaase seamstresses could make to help support their business and to raise funds for the school and sponsorships for the kids, she asked if I could help. She wanted something that they could make that would be marketable here. We came up with a pattern with lots of pockets that can be made out of about 1 yard of their beautiful fabric. 
I made up a sample & the instructions and sent them to her in Tulsa. 

Lisa went back to Ghana this week and she's been blogging about the trip all week. Check out what they are doing here

She bought fabric there. Enough for a big bunch of bags. 

And delivered it all to the ladies who are now making the them. 
I can't wait to see more photos of the trip and how the they all turn out. 

It's so crazy to see a pattern that left my hands a couple of weeks ago already translated into something so tangible. What a motivator to DO something. I have a tendency to explore ideas to death. I'm so grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this project. I'll post more when I have information on where to purchase these bags. 
I find this sort of work so deeply satisfying. Thanks Lisa!
How do you give the gift of sewing back?  I love to hear stories of how women help others and themselves with sewing. I'm starting to collect these stories and organizations into a new blog. A starting point for someone who might want to help but doesn't know where to start. What are your favorite sewing related organizations that give back to the world?  The Sewing Machine Project? Project Linus? Quilts of Valor? Let me know, send me your story of something you made that helped you as much as it helped someone else. I can't wait to hear from you!