30th April 2014
For the last three weeks, the Blue Ribbon volunteers have been working very hard commissioning a sewing workshop for the first Blue Ribbon project in Singapore. This project is hosted by Lakeside Family Services to support social development of the needy ones that are cared by this organization.
Through this partnership, the Blue Ribbon aims to provide:
- Lessons on sewing and crafts making
- Training on soft skills for business and workshop management
- Supply to small business order as part of clients’ hands-on learning experience.
Blue Ribbon also hopes that this ‘Peace Service for the Community’ (PSC) initiative will be a platform for volunteers and supporters from any background to serve together for the betterment of the local community.
The fruit of this 3-week labour was celebrated last Wednesday when all sewing machines were ready to be used by members of Mothers’ Support Group. A number of tee shirts design for Peace Ambassador’s training were also almost completed, thus production can begin next week. Blue Ribbon hopes that the small job order for the workshop can provide some income for mothers who are not able to work full time elsewhere.
Thanks to Madam Farida Tahir and Madam Aminah Ahmad who diligently learned to use these machines from Singer in-house trainer and later transferred their sewing skills to others. Special thanks also goes to Ms Grace Ling and Madam Racheal Seah who worked very hard with sourcing and buying items for the workshop, and Ms Vivien Cheng and Ms Rabiatul Ismail for their translation and administrative work. Last but not least, thank you to Ms Meixi Ng of Amber Initiative for preparing surveys and providing computer training to Blue Ribbon’s clients last Wednesday.
This first Blue Ribbon sewing training session ended with Ms Norani Abu Bakar (the Blue Ribbon founder) giving away gifts donated by Madam Alison Ng, and thanking all volunteers, Mr Jason Foo and Mr Hong Hai Seeto (key supporters to this project) and bidding farewell to Mr Matthew Ting. Matthew kindly flew from Sibu Sarawak, Malaysia to Singapore and spent almost ten days to help set-up the sewing room.
Another volunteer, Ms Jessie Wang, from He Long Jiang, China is also here to train Blue Ribbon clients making ‘Dragonfly’ (fridge magnet). This product is a signature design of Home Sweet Home, a social enterprise that serves the unsheltered and physically challenged people in Shanghai.
The raw materials for making these Dragonflies were generously donated by an ex-client of Home Sweet Home who is now the factory manager of this organization. Blue Ribbon hopes that other clients of Lakeside Family Services, such as the stakeholders of Family in Transition (FiT), will be inspired by his life transformation. The company will coorporate with Lakeside in providing training and helping FiT clients produce Dragonfly products during their stay at the transition homes.
To other supporters, whose names are not mentioned here, the Blue Ribbon would also like to give thanks to your generous donation and kind support, and to continue welcoming you to serve the community through this project. We also wish Norani, who continues to serve in-spite of her medical condition after her surgery, a speedy recovery.