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Sewing for Africa

Sewing for Africa (now a stand-alone, independently run project) provides a foundational course in sewing skills for women to prepare them for factory work or for setting up their own tailoring businesses.

Small groups of women learn and practice sewing skills with a specific focus on experiencing for themselves how they can make money from using these skills.

The initiative for the project, and the initial donation of equipment, came from a long-standing Durban-based Hindu organisation, the Divine Life Society. The project has also benefited from a generous donation from the US-based Conrad Hilton Fund which specifically assists programmes run by Catholic religious sisters like Sr Marion Millane, the Holy Family Sister who used to oversee this project. The project is currently run by Nozipho Tembe.

The project uses industrial and domestic equipment and is led by two trainers with outside assistance from other tailoring experts. Each group of 10-12 students comes in 3 days a week to learn and practice skills for a period of 3-4 months.

Much of the work that the trainees do is for paying clients who have commissioned the group to provide small scale tailoring, for example, finishing and embroidering pillowcases and napkins for hotels and restaurants, or liturgical clothes for church groups, sodalities and choirs.

For more information on Sewing for Africa, or if you are interested in commissioning work from the group, contact Nozipho Tembe:  noziphopatrica@gmail.com / 082 536 6076.