Stitches in time

During the year of Covid, Gill and Ant kept the Women's Group connected through Whatsapp, Zoom and in the lovely Windmill Community Gardens when we were able to meet. It has been a surreal experience to support women through this time of isolation, where the many usual challenges refugees and asylum seekers face have met with the heavy burden of health, family and poverty worries as well as digital exclusion. The art sessions we shared brought about connection and creative purpose for those with too much spare time on their hands - literally giving their hands something to do - and a sense of hope for the future, which is felt every time we engage with these resilient women. 

After finding out one of our regular participants used to be a Tailor in her country, she shared with us her intricate, and highly talented, embroidery embellishments on clothes. This sparked compliments and interest from the group and Ant followed the threads of inspiration. We posted out materials for everyone to have a go and learnt the stitches by spending time sewing together. The participant shared her skills including how to thread a needle and separate thread quickly without knotting which was invaluable! It was tricky, and most were complete beginners, but we completed a unique flower design, a bee design, and once more confident each participant chose the colours and stitches to customise a felt hand. Here we display the flowers, bees and hands to bring together our hive, and showcase the talents of the Women's Group, we are proud of their hard work. 

"Thank you Women's Group for letting me in to the learning experience and thanks for the entire Refugee Roots family for making this happen"