Stitchers switch to girls’ dresses

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Left to right, Scrubs Club members Shona Walton, Monika Morgan, Sheila Jones, Adrienne Obbard and Sue celebrate a job well done with cake. Other members of the group are not pictured as they are still isolating.

NO sooner had Ratley Scrubs Club put away their needles after the downturn in the coronavirus crisis, they got them out again to get sewing for a new cause.

The village stitchers got busy again after an appeal by charity Compassion Direct UK to make dresses out of unwanted pillowcases for Rwandan girls.

During the Rwanda genocide of 1994, many thousands of women were raped and left with HIV. These women are shunned by neighbours who are afraid of catching the disease.􏰀 As a consequence, they live in poverty and are unable to work to support their families. Many of their children do not go to school because they have no clothes to wear.

CDUK wants to help these women and children and began by asking people to recycle their unwanted pil- lowcases to make dresses for the women’s daughters so that they can go to school.

Shona Walton, one of the Scrubs Club organisers, said: “We celebrated both the closure of the Scrubs Club and the completion of 60 dresses in the traditional manner – with cake.”

The sewing club was established by Sheila Jones to help with the demand for surgical scrubs, masks and hats. In total, the group made around 1,000 items.

Making the dresses proved a nice distraction. Shona explained: “After the long haul of the very worthwhile but repetitive scrubs manufacture, the dresses have given scope for more creativity and fun, which has given the team a real boost at the end of the process.”