Sewing Program

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Mayan Families

Hi,Some information on Olga and the sewing program.
Usually what happens when a woman graduates from the sewing class is that we eventually ( hopefully ) have sewing machines that have been donated that we are able to give them.  Sometimes we have them on hand....other times we have to wait until they are donated.  We do not have a time line on how long that can take. Some women can get one quickly, others wait months and months....we try to do it by class and always take the women who have been on the waiting list first for the sewing machines.The sewing machines are donated from different people in the U.S.. ...we have groups and individuals who have been helping us.  We used to get second hand machines but now we have had all new machines donated ...which is much easier because if they need a piece replaced it is so hard to find. We usually have Singer , Brother or White machines donated and they have all been fantastic.But if you would like to donate a sewing machine to Olga individually, then she would receive that as soon as we purchase it. We can purchase a new Singer here for $180 US.  If you would like to purchase aprons from her, we would be really happy to organize that. If you would like an apron like the one in the photos that we use for the cooking classes, they are $12 US.  These are all made by women who have graduated from the sewing classes.   This is our way of trying to give them work. If you would like one made in all Guatemalan fabric...we can do that as well. ...it would also be $12 US. If you would like one for a child, they are $10 US.  We are working on a design that will have all the straps adjustable. We do send them up with people who are leaving for the U.S. so we cannot guarantee the exact time delivery time that the aprons will make it to your door.Mayerlin was working with the women for the sewing classes and then Jenny took it over. We don't have anyone working with us right now that has experience with sewing etc ....except for me....this is what we did when we first came to Guatemala...we ran a little workshop and made clothing for exportation...so I am doing it for the present ...and I enjoy working with the fabrics again! There is nothing like the materials and the colors of Guatemala.I had a meeting with the women from the sewing group who are making bags for a hospital in the U.S. ....they were concerned about the colors that were combining and felt that they didn't know which colors to use .....so I had everyone look at their  own traditional clothing and the woman  sitting next to them...   I put up different colors and asked them ...would this combine with this guipil  ( blouse ) that you are wearing or that your friend is wearing ? and they were adamant that it would not or that it would..........and then they realized that they already knew how to combine colors!Thank you for wanting to help Olga, these women come to these classes and it is a sacrifice for them to do so ...but they do it with the hope that this will bring a brighter future for themselves and their children. They don't expect to earn huge amounts of money, they want to be able to buy a little more food, buy a pair of shoes for their child , help their children with their extra expenses in school or  be able to buy medicine .. and it is so wonderful when this can happen for them! Sharon
Sharon Smart-Poage
MAYAN FAMILIESa registered 501.(c).(3) Non Profit Charity

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