These are the last of the dresses and shorts from 2017 being sent to Syria via Samaras Aid, not sure we will get photos, but I should be notified of their safe arrival. Thank you to everyone who made dresses last year - over 5000 dresses and 1000 shorts were received and sent on to children in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Greece, Syria to name but a few.
We start 2018 with the amazing story of Mary and David Hogg from Scunthorpe - see the BBc film here.
This has kick started the campaign for this year in an incredible way - thank you to everyone who has contacted me.
Love the shorts that Carol has made, these are so fab as they have draw cords instead of elastic so will fit more children and will last longer than those with elastic which tends to go hard in the heat conditions.
The Peasant Dresses also. Have a draw cord at the neckline again a magic idea as then the dress will fit almost any size shoulders without the need for alterations. Fantastic work Carol, thank you!
Hello Everyone. Just a short newsletter to update you.
We have heard from Louise who travelled to both Nepal and to India with dresses, shorts, teddies and more so kindly made by you all. Here is a short message update from Louise who has now returned from India, no photos as yet but if we are lucky enough to have a few I will post them.
"The team of 9 who travelled to India 12-19th November were able to pack all of the clothes which were so kindly made. Some of these were distributed across three children's homes for orphans, children affected by leprosy, and children with HIV. The remainder have been wrapped up to be given as Christmas presents to the children.
They were all so grateful to have something pretty to wear, and it was lovely to see the smiles and laughter as they tried everything on.
Please pass on my sincere thanks to everyone who has given their time to sew for such a wonderful cause.
With every blessing
The second piece of news is that at last our 5 boxes of dresses, shorts, teddies, bags and more will be sent out to join a shipment that is being flown to the DRC Congo and will we hope not stick too long in Customs, then will make their way to the Orphanage where those little ones in the photographs in our previous newsletter live. So they will have their new things before Easter.
It will take time as there are a number of stages on the journey where we have to make sure all is well before the next step! It can be very hard to be patient when we see their need!! At least we know they are on the way now so a HUGE THANK YOU to every one of you who has made with love.
If anyone has a few more shorts or peasant dresses to send please do now send to Jacqui Onslow
Who is continuing maintain all the work of Dress a Girl
Whilst I have stepped down from being involved rather full time due to my spine condition I am remaining in touch with two organisations close to me here (Omushana and Care for Uganda) and can let them have any more peasant dresses or shorts that arrive (NO pillowslip dresses this time thank you as they are not so appropriate in the region where these are visiting).
'Hello' from these young people who are needing dresses and shorts! Also little bags with a small note pad, a pencil, sharpener and eraser would be a welcome gift!
I know that you wonderful volunteers will take up your needles and scissors again for these lovely children!
We are taking with our USA counterparts to establish links to the DRCCongo where these children live. It will take time and if anyone knows of someone who is visiting the area please let us know!! The links are so very important. DAG - USA have been there but it was some time ago and we hope that we can help soon(ish!)
A couple more photos are on the gallery
Thanks for reading
A note from Alice who took dresses and more to Tuleeni.
We did it! And managed to take over the dresses and hand them out before we left.
So far here are the photos I have of some girls at Tuleeni Orphanage in your beautiful dresses!
A huge thank you from Tuleeni and Neema International for the dresses Mandy was over the moon to receive them and so were the girls! What you do is amazing and I hope you get to do this and see these smiles for yourself in these areas of the world one day if you haven't already!
The re-usable sanitary pads you donated I gave to another local charity called Pamoja Tunaweza (means together we can in swahili) women's helath centre in Moshi too. A young girl call Nicola recived them and was also very grateful for the pads and pants, they will help 8 women in making sure they can continue to work, go to school and not feel embarrassed whilst on their period.
After a very busy Eastertide, out visiting, giving talks and evening help sessions there came an even busier May with boxes to pack, parcels received, dresses and shorts unpacked, checked, logged and correspondence written - at least most have been.
There are a few I am sorry to say that are still awaiting my attention and for that I do apologise. I will get to those as soon as possible, certainly before next week.
I heard recently that our kind volunteers are 'buying' packs of plain pants for boys and girls with their Nectar points - thank you all so much for them, lovely idea!
Sad news came early one morning that Nepal was devastated yet again by a second earthquake. We have now sent off six boxes of dresses, shorts, teddies, wash-bags with toothbrush and pants for boys and girls and also lovely warm colourful fleece tops, beanies, ponchos and a couple of blankets.
Just a note - We aren't able to send heavy items like soaps and toothpaste and blankets and only send small teddies that will fit into a pocket(ish!)
Thank you to everyone who has made such wonderful tee shirt dresses, smart longer leg shorts and those ponchos, they are all on their way as we write to an orphanage where the children now live, having already been living blighted lives with Leprosy and now because of that devastating earthquake having lost their families, homes and everything they knew.
This is our very own super star - Ethan
This is Ethan, we have a very special 'Thank you' for Ethan. He made lots of tee shirt style dresses, his mum Kat says that he just kept on going - sewing for the children in Nepal. And - his dresses are a delight. Straight seams, hems that are double stitched and the skirt joined to a stretched tee shirt. Just perfect! Lots of lovely fabrics all colour co-ordinated too. He is our shining star of the month.
These are some of the other knitteds that have gone out to Nepal - thank you everyone!
Jacqui is now returned from her trip out to Jinja in Uganda and has photos which are now in our gallery. Keep a look out for those!
Our new boxes being laid out ready are going to remote villages in the wilds of Madagascar with the wonderful Rebecca from MAF.
Lovely Tina has been in touch, she has been busy making for us and has written a fab guide to making a lovely little dress with a tie at the back - fab - no buttons and no zip, so just perfect. Take a look at her blog here.
Mary has made these and more, really beautiful dresses and smart shorts with co-ordinating teddies. They are on their way right now, this time to Malawi where we just know they will bring wide smiles to their recipients!
A number of volunteers have asked if there is anyone else in their area who is stitching / knitting / fundraising. If you contact us through the 'CONTACTS' page and let us know that you are interested in linking up with someone else then I will assume that you are happy for me to pass on your email to others in your area who are also keen to 'meet up and stitch/knit/fundraise' and I will get the links organised.
Life can sometimes be lonely and I know from my own sewing and painting that this can sometimes be a solitary activity, I feel that it is always so much more fun to be in touch with even just one other person to stitch. So - if you would like that then please do send me your message on the form on our 'CONTACTS' page.
During April there has been a wealth of work going on behind the scenes on your behalf.
DURING FEBRUARY & MARCH a fantastic number of garments totalling 750 went to Africa
Thank you to all our volunteer sewers. Do you know that that equates to over 1,500 hours of sewing!
NOW to news - APRIL - that gloriously sunny month!
A BANK ACCOUNT - at last - thank you Lloyds one of the few now to support a community/charity account. As soon as all the final clearances are done we will also have a Just Giving page for you wonderful folks to use. WATCH FOR NEWS on the start date.
CONTACT with a number of staff at organisations who can take garments out to where they are most needed. We now have boxes sent out be distributed to FIVE different orphanages and organisations and packages to a further three. In total an estimated 700 garments and some bags and teddies.
IN ADDITION we are sending out around 550 garments to a contact to go to NEPAL and a further box of 150 as soon as we get clearance from another supporter.
Watch for more news of distributing as we go through May, several large shipments in the pipeline and not all to Africa!!
Know someone who is travelling abroad and who might take a few dresses, a school party - a church group or even just an individual? Do contact us and let us know - use the contact form - the button is at the top of the page
We need your fundraising ideas and event now. We are financing ourselves at the moment but that just cannot continue. Jacqui and I are in need of you lovely people to fundraise so that several things can happen
1. - We can post out more
2. We can visit groups and give talks and help at events
3. We can extend our flyers and posters and patterns so that we can send them out to you.
4. We can finally register as a full blown Charity - for which we need an income of several thousand each year!!
PLEASE put your ideas for fundraising below here in the comments or on our contact form - thank you. We have been very fortunate in receiving over £110 from Sophie and her friends after a sew-a-thon event.
Now there is another being organised for tomorrow (Wed 6th May by Emma in Lancashire - at the Grace and Favour shop
Located inside Marsh Mill Shopping Village, Thornton, Lancashire, FY5 4JZ
LAST BUT NOT LEAST
Is there anyone who would like to run this Newsletter on line for me? It would be great to have a newsletter editor - you just need some writing skills, and be able to hunt down news then email it to me once a month - not too taxing!! Just email me to let me know if you would like to be the editor!
Thank you - Jayne
Please if you have news, photos of your groups sewing, and snippets of interest do let me know by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hoping that you all enjoyed time with family and friends over Easter.
This is a new item for us - a newsletter to keep up with whats going on out there!
We would like this to be inclusive and so if you have some news or something you would like to share then please do get in touch via the contact form - the button is at the top of the page - and we will put it into the next newsletter. We hope to have a newsletter published at least once a month or more often if there is more news!!
We are about to receive a box of cotton fabric pieces from a generous supporter so if you think you could make use of some to make the over 10 year old dresses and shorts just let me know!
Recently a huge parcel of dresses and shorts went out to BAKARY SAMBOUYA IN THE GAMBIA where we supported with over 200 dresses and shorts.
I am now getting ready to send out :-
200 + to Northern China
100 to the amazing Facing Africa trust
200 to the gambia to the Tuleeni orphanage
Jacqui has sent dresses to Kenya and to South Africa and plans to take more to her orphanage in jinja, uganda
As you can see we are very busy on your behalf!
Do keep stitching especially those 10 years plus sizes in both shorts and dresses! We are receiving lots of requests for the over 10 year old sizes. Those can be made of course from two pillowslips or cut from fabric or from a duvet cover no longer needed.
Just check that there are no stains or yellow patches and are thoroughly washed and they will be absolutely fine!
Sue Nicholson is exploring and developing new washable/reusable sanitary pads for the teenage girls. If anyone feels they would either like to donate to that mini project - we are buying the belts as they are quite fiddly to make - or to help by making then contact us through the contact page. I know Sue will be delighted to get more underway!
Thanks for reading
PS - just a reminder - If you have some news or something you would like to share then please do get in touch via the contact form and we will put it into the newsletter next time.