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We helped the Women's Empowerment Group at Melbourne's Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (and you can to!)
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The ASRC runs a Women's Empowerment Group (WEG) that meets at least once every week. How cool is this:
'This program supports women seeking asylum to realise their full potential through a range of professional development workshops and activities, including English language classes, education and training and other community-based activities to foster creativity and social engagement. The program also supports our entrepreneurial female members to start up their own businesses as well as running a nine-week ‘Sisterhood Journey’, a self-growth program run in partnership with MIND Australia and the SHINE program in partnership with Hope Inc.'
When Karen from the ASRC got in touch to ask if we could help out with sewing equipment for the WEG, we figured that if anyone could help, we could! We held a drive at the Obus Studio (read: called our mothers and friends), and managed to wrangle quite a collection: five sewing machines, including an overlocker and a leather specialty machine. Obus paid to have these machines checked and serviced, and we recently had the immense pleasure of delivering them to the ASRC.
It was astonishingly wonderful to meet some of the lovely ladies from the group. We were even treated to flowers and the most sensational afternoon-tea, with home-made snacks from India, Ethiopia, the Pacific Islands and more.
The food was accompanied by some pretty excellent chats in the tea room, and we could tell just how much the group means to these women. They described the ASRC as 'home', and travel from as far as Geelong to get there.
The Women's Empowerment Group is always in need of donations. If you have any excess fabric or sewing equipment, including scissors, thread (sewing and overlocker), pins, snippers and any other sewing paraphernalia that you can spare please contact Karen at The ASRC.
Alternatively, if Footscray is a bit hard to get to, drop your donations at any Obus store and we'll deliver them for you.
We'd like to offer special thanks to Keryn Haberman and Violetta Gordana Mihailovici for their incredibly generous donations, we couldn't have done it without you!