Our women empowerment programmes is reaching new hights this year. We have groups in the Western Cape and in the Eastern Cape making great arts and crafts and creative work.
Approximately 30 women meet weekly and are granted the opportunity to apply their creative skills in all kinds of needle work and the production of beautifully crafted objects. These include exquisite girls’ and women’s dresses, scarves, socks, gloves, jerseys, handbags, shoes, dolls and dolls’ clothes, quilts, the stringing of beads, and beautifying existing objects through embroidery/painting. What is promising is that (middle-aged) women bring their (unemployed) daughters and friends to working sessions and in this way a fertile seedbed is created for the exchange of ideas and skills and the opportunity to work together on a project.
We have received an order for our personalised dolls which the ladies make and the dolls were donated to children from iKhaya Le Themba. Each doll is unique and has its own name. The children love them and it is rewarding to see the happiness on their faces when receiving the dolls. We hope to build on this towards other Provinces, to help the unemployed have new hope and live out their dreams.
The programme creates a platform for disadvantaged, marginalised women and youth, including the disabled, to come together to share ideas and solutions not just with regard to income generation and related problem-solving, but also to social issues which deeply affect their communities. As these women go back into their communities, they share their new ideas and attitudes with their families and broader circles of influence. The result is that, gradually, the entire ethos of their community is transformed. It is about transforming an “I” mentality into a “we” mentality.
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