I Let Out a Squeal
By Kylie Gersekowski—Pittsworth Queensland, Australia
About 12 months ago, while sitting outside in sunny Queensland in Australia, I stumbled upon the Sew Powerful Purse Project. I was looking for a charity sewing project, which linked my love of sewing bags with making a difference to someone else.
I remember when I was reading the Sew Powerful Purse Project purpose, I let out a squeal! Not only could I sew my favorite items, but I could make a difference to women from another country!
I have always had a passion for helping others, and have worked with people with disabilities and medical conditions for a long time. To help others even in a small way makes my heart sing.
I have a friend who is Zambian. She has told me many stories about her home country and the difficulties women in particular face, difficulties she faced as a young girl. I discussed the Sew Powerful Purses project with her and her face lit up—she could not believe there was such a project.
We talked about the bags specifically and she told me what a huge difference this would make to these girls. This just cemented the idea that this was something I wanted to be a part of, and not in a small way.
After making a few Sew Powerful Purses—and oh, what fun they were to sew—I started to wonder if other Aussie sewers might like to share my enthusiasm for this project. At this point, I started a Facebook group—and boy, did it grow fast! It began as a group for Aussies to sew purses, share their work, and encourage and support each other. This very quickly became a group for everyone, no matter where they were from, to share in this process.
This Facebook group became more than just another group. Friendships were formed, stories were told, encouragement and joy were shared between members on the completion of each Sew Powerful purse, and what the Sew Powerful journey meant to each of them.
I became the very proud Australian Ambassador for the Sew Powerful Purse Project. (What an honor!) The bags sewn by Aussies began arriving in my letterbox to be packaged up and sent in bulk to the U.S.
There were beautiful fabrics, impeccable sewing, and notes of empowerment inside each bag. I could not have been prouder of each contribution made by #teamaussie. I shouted it from the rooftops, writing articles in sewing magazines and blogging about this journey. I wanted everyone to know what an amazing project this was.
To top it all off, watching the live stream of the bags being unpacked was just amazing to be a part of! Just think, people from all around the globe took the time and energy to create a Sew Powerful purse for someone they had never met, knowing this will make a significant difference. What a team effort!
Australian education is top notch, it is accessible, children learn to read and write, and so much more; we are really from the lucky country. Education is powerful in creating our future.
To know that a Sew Powerful purse that I have sewn right here in Australia may help a young lady in Zambia have better access to education and therefore a brighter future means more than I can explain in words. I cannot wait to create more purses for this wonderful project. Knowing I can make a difference doing something that I love is simply fabulous.