Refugee project with the Red Cross

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From Jo Burke, Curate at All Saints:

I am looking for people with sewing machine skills and time, to teach refugees on a weekly basis.

I have been working with the Red Cross -who have premises on Dunstable Road near All Saints in Bury Park – to set up a project to teach refugees and new immigrants sewing machine skills. We have a small number of sewing machines donated and currently being refurbished.

The idea came from the women service users themselves. They attend a drop in centre in Bury Park on a Monday. They are not allowed to work, have very limited access to benefits and are at risk of being very isolated and depressed: especially since they are forced into inactivity and have a great deal to worry about in the homes they have left behind. The Red Cross think that teaching sewing will combat isolation and depression as well as teaching skills which may be useful when and if the women are allowed to work.

I had two very keen volunteers lined up to do the teaching. However one has now found a job and the other has been ill. So I have a project nearly ready to start and suddenly no volunteers to teach sewing. If you are interested or know of other who might be, please contact Jo Burke on

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