Last autumn 2019, the Weltladen Duisburg-Rumeln donated 2,000 euros to ZAC e.V. for the purchase of 10 sewing machines for our planned project “Sewing Room”.
That presented us with the big problem of which women we can provide this limited number of sewing machines without causing something like envy within the community among those who can not be considered.
We have, we believe, brought about a good solution. With the director of the Lutindi Mental Hospital, Dr. Marwa, on whose premises our Tanzanian NGO “C.B.R.O.” also has its headquarters, we reached the following agreement:
the hospital will provide us permanently and free of charge with a room suitable for the installation of 10 sewing stations, in which the machines will be installed and the sewing stations set up. The room will be renovated and prepared at our expense. In this room we offer sewing courses for interested women from Lutindi, primarily women who are socially disadvantaged. At the same time, female patients of the hospital can be trained here as seamstresses within the framework of occupational therapy.
In addition to the idea of training, the sewing machines can also be used by the women for their own sewing work. The keyword here is “sewing machine sharing”.
We as ZAC also provide an initial supply of necessary cloth and sewing materials. This is to be used to make typical products from typical fabrics of the country (e.g. scarves, capes, shirts). The products can then, according to the offer of the Weltladen Rumeln, be sold in the world store and 50% of the proceeds go to the sewing women and 50% to the chronically underfunded Lutindi Mental Hospital.
We had the roof of the assigned room repaired, walls plastered and brightly painted. In Dar es Salaam, ten sewing machines of different types (butterfly and electric) were purchased in advance and transported to Lutindi. A carpenter built a large cutting table.
In February 2021, the first training series began with a group of 8 by a tailor specially hired for this purpose. Further groups will follow. After that, independent work can begin and we can consider the project complete.
A nice opportunity for the women to improve their living conditions and for the Lutindi Mental Hospital to start a new therapy.