In August, we started a fundraising campaign called ‘Thread of Hope’, placing focus on our Women Empowerment Programme, a significant component of which are the sewing classes. During one of the regular field visits, SB Overseas’ chairwoman noticed some of the sewing machines at the centres had diminished in quality and were no longer suitable for their purpose.
75% of the refugees currently in Lebanon are women and children. Among the Syrian refugee families in Lebanon, many are female headed households, where women bear all household and income-generating responsibilities. This dual role of women as caregivers and resource providers makes it more difficult to adapt to a new environment, causing further isolation and marginalisation.
To relieve part of this burden and help women to focus on themselves, SB Overseas has set up a Women’s Empowerment Programme at each of its three centres in Lebanon. We aim to provide women in the programme with a safe space where they can learn skills and take part in psychosocial activities. Depending on the centre, classes include English, sewing, crochet, beauty and Arabic literacy.
Our ‘Thread of Hope’ campaign lasted for 4 months and finished in December 2018 and we raised EUR 3.114,00. We were able to fundraise money for 20 new sewing machines, 12 of which were assigned to our centre in Arsal, while 8 others are now used by the women in the Saida centre. We will donate the machines from the previous cycle to program beneficiaries.
See a video of the women with the new machines here.
Written by Caroline Bullen, Project Development & Communication Officer