Medrine and the Sewing School
Stitching the Fabric of our Foundation

August 22, 2018  

Part 2 in a series of 3. Read Part 1 here.

After months of talking, Laurie DeJong and the Paper Fig Foundation decided to support Medrine’s dream of starting a sew school in Kidodo Village.

“Within six months, we grew out of the little shack,” said DeJong. “We combed the neighborhood for a different location, and we were able to find the location we’re in now, which fits about 16 sewing machines.”

Medrine has scaled the program. Each session lasts 6 months, with intakes in July and January. And with each successive session, there have been more students enrolled. The current class of 83 is the most ever.

On a personal level, it’s transformed Medrine’s life. When she first told her parents she wanted to make clothes, they refused to let her go to school for it. They didn’t think it would pay.

“I spent one year at home doing nothing,” she said.

Finally, after pressure from the community, her father agreed to let her go to sew school. Now, she is able to support her family with her sewing.

“I bought my father a pair of trousers,” she said, “and I bought my mother a Christmas dress. When I gave my parents these items they were surprised because they realized tailoring is [profitable]. Now my parents respect my career. The Paper Fig Foundation pays me a salary, and I am able to pay school fees for my children.”

Medrine’s parents sent her younger sister to the PFF Sew School, and now she’s a graduate as well.

“So she is also working,” said Medrine. “Paper Fig is a good organization because it is taking care of me and my family.”

Now that girls and women are moving through the sew school, what’s next? Check back on Friday to find out.

 Ready to support the work of Medrine?