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New Venue for Sderot Sewing Center

Seamstresses busy sewing in Sderot

The Sderot Sewing Center, initiated by Meira and Jack Applebaum and supported by ESRA (and especially Victoria Habib), has reopened after a break since the summer.

I felt that the sewing course was not developing as it should be with the investment of time and money. By chance I met Kamila Lands-kind, Director of the Community Involvement Department of Sapir College, and asked her if she had a student who spoke Amharit, to coordinate the sewing course. (The students receive scholarships and are involved in community projects in Sderot and other places in the area.)

Kamila phoned after a couple of days and said we could have the course at the School of Arts attached to Sapir College. So at the end of December we started with four sewing students and today there are eight. The two older women want to embroider. We have a wonderful retired sewing teacher from a nearby kibbutz and a lovely student who will coordinate and who speaks Amharit. The machines ESRA bought are there in a locked cupboard. We bought everyone sewing kits and we hope we are on our way.

We have a beautiful room. At the first lesson our sewing students learnt to sew kits for their needles and scissors from jeans material that Esther Niv, the teacher, cut out for them.

Eventually we will need extra machines and materials – but the sewing teacher will decide when it is necessary. Thanks for the materials we received from Netanya and from an ESRA volunteer.

The excitement of coming to the beautiful campus which the women had never been to is already empowering. One of the reasons for the enthusiasm is a result of the visit we made to an ESRA sewing center at a community center in Netanya, thanks to Nina Zuck who organized it. The Sderot visitors were inspired by the level of the dresses the Netanya seamstresses had been taught to make (see ESRAmagazine 181).

Wish us luck!

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