By Paula Ebben

FRAMINGHAM (CBS) – They’re sewing to help others. A group of women from a Framingham church are making dresses that will make a difference for African refugees.

Their goal started out at 50 dresses. But in less than a month they’ve made over 100. And now they’re trying to get them to Sudanese refugees by Christmas.

They pin, they cut and they assemble, creating colorful sundresses for refugees from S. Sudan who have fled to Uganda.

sew Church Group Makes Dresses For African Refugees

Margaret Kiggala (WBZ-TV)

“This is one of the worst refugee crises in the world,” says Marion McCarthy who brought the idea to life by recruiting people at her Catholic church, St. Bridget’s in Framingham. “After Mass, people came out and I start saying, does anyone here sew?”

You bet they do. About a dozen women became the core group. Women like Elizabeth Katende and Margaret Kiggala who are both from Uganda. “It does mean a lot to me because I’ve seen the kids on the street. I’ve seen the orphans,” says Margaret.

“The clothes will be bringing them joy, but also giving them hope that there’s someone out here who cares,” adds Elizabeth.

dresses Church Group Makes Dresses For African Refugees

Dresses made for African refugees (WBZ-TV)

The women brought their own fabric, and when they ran out, more was donated. In three weeks they made 117 dresses. “These dresses are going to go with love to a bunch of kids that don’t know who we are. But we’re sending love with this,” says Carol Garbarino, one of the group members.

In a world with overwhelming problems it would be easy to say that individuals can’t make a difference. But these women decided to take something they knew, and use it to change the world, one dress at a time. “I hope their heart is lighter I mean, I can’t imagine what they’ve suffered,” Marion says.

The next step is to raise a few hundred dollars to ship the dresses to a Bishop in Uganda who will distribute them to the refugees. If you’d like to help with that, donations can be made to:

St. Bridget’s Parish
15 Wheeler Ave.
Framingham, MA 01701
Checks should be made out to: St. Bridget’s Parish, notation: Dresses for Africa


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