Partner: Theovision : 24
Daughter Valerie Hogan and I traveled with Theo and Monica Asare, our Theovision partners, to Asamankese. Greeted with singing, we were blessed to see the gradates in the front rows with tables before them of the clothing they’ve made. Its impossible to identify one highlight of the event. Three separate fashion parades gave the widows the opportunity to wear their first creation, a simple shift dress, their second creation demonstrating today’s popular garment styles, and finally, their favorite outfit they made for themselves.
While the garments and skill displayed were superior, greater still was the expression of accomplishment on their faces, the posture of self esteem and confidence in their new identity as a tailor. Each proudly accepted her certificate, bag of sewing supplies. seed money, and her own machine to start her micro business as a tailor. Thanks to each of you who helped make this possible.
ASAMANKESE – GHANA SEWING PROJECT
DECEMBER 1ST,2012 TO JANUARY 31, 2013 REPORT
“Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit serving the Lord” (Romans 12:11)
To God be all the glory; great things He has done in the lives of the widows involved with the sewing project in Asamankese, Ghana. The participants are excited and are grateful to those who have helped to enable them learn this trade. Because of the opportunity which has been offered to these fortunate widows, others are expectant and are praying that they will also benefit from this program. The participants also look forward longingly to see Auntie Miriam.
The program is going on smoothly and we report on what transpired within the last 62 days (December 2012 and January, 2013).
Below is the report received from the field.
HOLIDAY BREAK: In view of the Christmas festivities, the trainees were given 2 weeks break to help them to do their normal programs and activities. They went on 21 December, 2012 and faithfully returned on the 4th of January, 2013.
ATTENDANCE: The attendance has been encouraging as every trainer seeks to take maximum advantage of the opportunity that has been availed to them. Among the 25 trainees, average weekly attendance is 23.
- INTEREST: The trainees’ interest has been awesome. Every trainee’s attitude has been positive and that has resulted in more widows showing interest to be trained.
- RATE OF LEARNING: The rate of learning cannot be over emphasized. These women, some who are advanced in age, have been able to use only 3 months to sew “Kaba” top and “Slit” (Please see pictures included). Because they have been serious in attending the session, the teachers also have given them their maximum attention.
- DAYS OF MEETING: The meeting days have remained unchanged, this TUESDAYS, WEDNESDAYS and FRIDAYS, every week.
- ACHIEVEMENTS: Within the last four (4) months, the trainees have been taught how to sew the following types of dresses, and each one of them have been able to sew on her own:
- “Kaba” (local top dress for women, two types)
- Slit (local long skirt for women dress, two types)
- Children school uniform ( two types)
- Straight dress.
The above dresses are the common ones which are used daily by the people, and that is why the concentration has been on them.
- DAY OF COMPLETION: The trainees were informed that, the program will run for six (6) months. In view of that, the training period ends on 31st March, 2013. We are therefore proposing, WEDNESDAY APRIL 17, 2013 as the day for the Graduation.
- REQUEST: So far, thirty one (31) widows have registered to take part in the 2nd training program. We are therefore requesting that, provision be made for the 2nd batch training to commence on 1st May, 2013.
- CONCLUSION: We the leaders of the Widows groups are very delighted by the progress of the trainees, and also very grateful to the sponsor of this noble program.
- (A) TRAINER’S COMMENTS: I am very happy about the rate of their leaning. If they continue, they can go far and do well, when they go out to work on their own.
(B) SUPERVISOR’S COMMENTS: everything is on course, and we are all waiting for the day of graduation.
REV. GEORGE ADUBAA (SUPERVISOR)
Dated on Wednesday, 11th February, 2013
Presented by: ………………………………….
DOROTHY LARBI (SECRETARY)
Forms of the widows (would be trainees) had been filled with their passport pictures affixed, waiting to be signed by us. The tables and chairs which had been custom made for the project had been lined up. 25 widows with ages ranging between 45 to 65 years with average dependents of six had assembled, ready to be ushered into the next phase of their lives.
At about 10:15, the program begun with an opening prayer followed by songs of praises and worship to the Almighty who has remembered these widows and brought help their way. Afterwards, the leader announced the purpose of the gathering and went on to say the Lord had smiled upon the widows, that it was unprecedented and more than they could ask for. Mrs Asare gave a short speech in which she asked the fortunate widows to be serious about the project so that the donors will be encouraged to support more widows. She also asked them to always pray for Miriam Neff and her team. Rev Asare also reiterated the point that widows are always distressed and marginalized in our part of the world so with the opportunity offered them to learn a trade to support their families they should be serious and make good use of the golden opportunity.
After the speeches the sewing machines were unpacked and neatly arranged on the tables. All the sewing accessories made up of 2 pairs of scissors ( big one for cutting and a small one for other duties), office pins, needles, sewing thread, tailors' chalk, and six yards each of gray baft were all packed into take-away bags and placed beside each sewing machine. Each of the 25 widow trainees were made to sit behind their machine. The sewing project was officially launched with Mrs. Asare formally handing over a sewing machine and accessories to one of the trainees. After that a pair of scissors and some items were handed over to the trainers; symbolic of the charge or commission to train the widows. Pictures were then taken and prayers said at about 12:15 pm to bring an end to the program.
The widows were full of praise for the Widow Connection team and profusely thanked them. Many of them granted interviews and expressed their profound gratitude.
There were quite a number of widows who are members of the Widows’ association but who are not part of the first batch of 25 trainees. They are praying and hoping that there will be subsequent sewing projects to cater for the rest of them. One widow who has six children, lost her husband about two years ago. She and her children have been thrown out of the husband's home and one of her sons who was in high school has dropped out of school because of financial constraints. She however was not fortunate to be part of the trainees because she came in late.
After consultations with the leaders, trainers and the trainees, they have come to a consensus to commence the training on 11th September 2012. The meetings days will be Tuesdays, Wednesdays ad Fridays in the afternoons after which they would have returned from their various farms and other duties.
The Theovision team advised to keep a register so that non-serious trainees will be taken off and their machines/position taken by those on waiting list.