The Women of Ghana – Sewing Machine Project
Women living in the Ho region in Ghana face a unique set of challenges that can be difficult to overcome. This is due to the lack of resources, education, and economic opportunities available to them.
In many African countries, women are still viewed as second-class citizens and are expected to take on traditional roles within the family. This limits their ability to access resources and economic opportunities. As a result, women in these regions face a higher risk of poverty and inequality, which can be further compounded by issues such as gender-based violence and lack of access to healthcare.
One of the biggest challenges facing women in the poorest regions of Africa is the lack of access to education and resources. According to UNICEF, in Sub-Saharan Africa, only 58% of girls complete primary school compared to 64% of boys. Without an education, women are unable to access the same economic opportunities as men, which can lead to a cycle of poverty.
In 2013 after a very inspiring meeting with local Ghanaian activists, who point out the urgent need to help women in Ghana with self-employment we decided to add this type of help to our charity curriculum.
It didn’t take long to come up with a good idea. For the past 30 years, we have been asked many times if we accept donations of old sewing machines. It became evident that many Irish households have an unused or broken sewing machine that could be put to good use. This inspired us to create the “Women of Ghana – Sewing Machine Project”.
It is common in Ghana for local communities to be self-organized, with small groups of people helping each other with work and exchanging knowledge amongst themselves. That is why our main task in order to achieve our goal, was to provided local communities with sewing machines, spare parts, and fabrics to aid them in their efforts.
A particular group that we have chosen to support are mothers with special needs kids. These children are often marginalised and their families can be ostracised by their communities due to a lack of knowledge and understanding of disabilities and conditions.
Their journeys are both heartbreaking and inspirational, providing a reminder of the strength of the human spirit and the importance of offering aid and assistance to these families. By providing the mothers with the resources and support they need, we can help ensure that their children have a brighter future.
After 8 years of hard work, we have managed to deliver over 1000 sewing machines, enabling thousands of families to break free from poverty, empowering women with dignity and providing children with a chance to pursue their education without disruption. This project has had an incredible impact in the lives of many.
Thanks to the generous individuals who donated their long-forgotten sewing machines, inherited from their mothers and grandmothers, that had been collecting dust in their attics for years, we were able to bring about a positive transformation for many families in Ghana both now and in the future.
This project is far from over so If you have any used or broken sewing machines, please reach out to us! We still have a lot of work to do, and your donation can make a difference in people’s lives. Together, let’s create positive change!