Teen Sew Cool
Here’s a Creative Kindness project that touches three generations. Jean Rice shared information about a program she is involved with called Teens Sew Cool. It began when several area senior sewers became concerned about the absence of affordable sewing courses for the upcoming generation.
They found a usable, free facility in a young people’s county training building. Teens come to the facility for counseling and health care. A significant number are pregnant. One of the staff helped find students for the sewing class.
The program is structured into 2-1/2 hour classes, once a week for 8 weeks. Although as Jean says, when someone is near completion of a project students and instructors stay longer to finish. The instructors are all volunteers. Materials, tools, and sewing machines are donations from sewers and instructors.
The students learn about sewing machines and sew on paper to learn how to do corners, circles, straight lines, and 1/4" seam allowances. By the end of each course, the students have a completed a layette.
“We have students who requested to come for additional, more advanced lessons,” says Jean. “We also have teens who are not pregnant. Three 16-year-old boys are now part of the class, one of whom is making the baby projects and giving them to his 15-year-old sister who is pregnant. We have decided that everyone can follow our beginners structured course. If they have no use for a baby layette, then they will learn how to sew making it and then donate to someone in need.”
Soon Teens Sew Cool will have two classes going. The group received requests to start another program and a local hospital is letting them use a room in one of their facilities. Who benefits from this wonderful program? The pregnant girls, the babies, and the senior citizens who do the instructing. “We see bonds being made, we feel extra good when they return with their babies in the clothes and blankets made in class, and we have the opportunity to help some young people who have become adults too soon. Our youngest person in class was a 3 day old baby girl. We see the faces of these students when they are working on a sewing project and complete some item, which is emphasized by everyone giving them a drum roll on the table. Not only that, you should see the faces of the instructors when their students walk in and hand them their brand new babies.”
To help Teens Sew Cool with donations of sewing machines, notions, fabric, or funds to purchase supples, contact Jean T. Rice, Teens Sew Cool, 37067 S. Canyon Side Drive, Tucson AZ 85739