Sunday, February 8, 2009

Market Day!

Thank you so much for your prayers! The Refugee Sewing Society's first Market Day at Clarkston Community Center was a HUGE success. Organizing, pricing, and tagging the handmade items our ladies had created over the past few weeks was a major endeavor. Kelly and I worked on it for several days. On Friday, Tim and I completed the tagging and put everything in order for Saturday's big event.

How do you like these Somali creations? I thought they were flags, but Binti and Madina informed me that they are fans. These were made from yarn, sticks, and recycled plastic industrial straps. I'm a big "fan" of these beauties!
And who could resist these cute booties?Leela's cap and sweater vest combo totally amazed me. Such gorgeous craftsmanship.The crocheted doll caps were so precious. I had great hopes that we would sell a few of these dolls.On Saturday morning -- after stopping at Scott and Tiffany Kelley's house for a fortifying pancake breakfast with missionaries and members of Cellebration Fellowship -- Kelly, Tim, Andrei, and I headed over to the community center to set up shop.

At 11:00, several members of The Refugee Sewing Society arrived in their traditional Bhutanese saris.At 11:15, the doors opened! Our greatest gift was a visit from 45 members of Holly Springs Baptist Church. They drove more than 2 hours from South Carolina to deliver baskets filled with items for our needy refugees and to stop in at our Market Day.

At first, they weren't quite sure what to think . . . But it wasn't long before the girls discovered the dolls.Every single doll sold to our precious young visitors! Kelly had her hands full keeping things organized and explaining about our products.As the room filled, everyone began purchasing RSS handmade items.
I was thrilled that many fellow missionaries and friends stopped by to shop.Our RSS ladies enjoyed meeting visitors from Holly Springs.Julie Summey organized the church mission trip, and I enjoyed watching her get to know some of our ladies. She has a heart for missions, and I'm praying she may one day join us here in "the village" if God leads.Man Bista, a lovely Bhutanese woman, taught sewing, weaving, painting, knitting, and crochet in her refugee camp. The women who purchased her items enjoyed meeting the creator of such lovely work.Faithful partner of The Refugee Sewing Society, Intown Community Church had promoted our Market Day. I was delighted to meet the church members who came to shop.RSS broke new ground by taking orders for products to be made by some of our ladies! Shannon, wife to our primary Intown ministry partner Chuck Vogt, ordered two crocheted caps. Man Bista is going to make a summer dress for Annie.The Refugee Sewing Society has many goals. One is to help provide income for members. On Market Day, we took our first step toward this goal and the start of our microenterprise program. Tim and I were stunned as we sorted the sales tickets and parceled out the money that evening. What bountiful blessings!Many thanks to friends far and near who prayed for us, visited our Market Day, purchased items our refugee friends made, and surrounded us with love. May God bless you!

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