Yarn finds home with refugees

Found a home for some of that yarn recently at the most wonderful place, the Refugee Sewing Society in Clarkston. If you’ve been following this blog, you know that we came into a couple large donations of yarn recently and began to look around for other organizations that might need yarn. The Clarkston Community Center referred us to the Refugee Sewing Society, so I went to visit them Thursday.

They appreciated our donation of yarn — they have some yarn already, but they are looking for certain kinds, primarily 100% cotton and/or “no dye lot” yarns. I learned that Sugar‘n Cream is a favorite brand.

OK, wait, yarn and … sewing? Turns out the Sewing Society includes a sewing group, yarn group and bead group. There is a beginners’ sewing group and a more advanced sewing group. Cathy Palmer, founder of the nonprofit organization, teaches sewing and, I think, sets the tone of love, friendship, encouragement and joy.

From their web site:
The Refugee Sewing Society serves refugee women who have fled genocide by providing an atmosphere for healing, an opportunity to express creativity, a means for building self-esteem, and a source of income.

The women are from war-torn countries such as Sudan, Somalia, Burundi, Burma and Bhutan.  While they learn to sew, knit, crochet or bead, they also learn some English. The organization is approaching its 3rd anniversary. It currently serves 35-40 women but that number varies as women have babies, get jobs or move away, and new women join up.

Located in the classroom building of Clarkston International Bible Church, the Refugee Sewing Society runs on a lot of volunteer power, and I met a few of their volunteers. Anne leads the yarn group, and Amy was helping to set up a store for selling the women’s handiwork. The yarn group is making scarves in school colors to sell as holiday gifts.

Refugee Sewing Society products

Love these luscious scarves! Each hand-crafted item is tagged with the photo and name of the woman who made it.

If you’re interested in assisting the Refugee Sewing Society, here’s what they currently need:

  • Volunteers, including groups such as church groups and school groups
  • “No dye lot” yarn
  • 100% cotton yarn
  • Good quality elastic
  • Nylon zippers
  • Kids’ prints fabric only (no other fabric now; they have enough of everything except kids’ prints)

Call 770-814-8753 or e-mail refugeesewingsociety@gmail.com

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Follow us on Twitter and Facebook, and if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions about workshops, or projects you’d like to share with us, drop us a line at creativereuse@wonderroot.org!

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About Susan

One of the founders of WonderRoot Creative Reuse.
This entry was posted in Creative Reuse, Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Yarn finds home with refugees

  1. Pam says:

    What a fantastic connection!

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