Thursday, May 24, 2012

The Ones That Got Away and a few other thoughts

Some friends of mine belong to a house church called Prairie Wind Mennonite, here in rural Manitoba.

Every couple of years, they send a group of people to Kenya to assist in the building of sand dams in order to keep water closer to their villages, and irrigate their fields and livestock.

Prairie Wind is committed to supporting the Utooni organization and annually hosts a fundraiser for the same.

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Utooni Development Organisation

Utooni Development Organisation works with community Self Help Groups to transform their environment in a sustainable manner, enabling farmers to improve water supplies, food production, income and health.

Utooni Development Organisation is supporting community self-help groups in semi-arid areas of Eastern Kenya. The goal of the project is for rural communities in Kathonzweni, Kibwezi, Machakos, Makueni, Mbooni East and West, Mwala,Nzaui and Kajiado Districts to obtain water, food, and income security and improve health. The outcomes expected are to improve the local water supply to free up time for women and children; to improve farm land and food production methods; to increase fuel trees; to improve livestock management; to improve varieties of seeds planted; and to increase diversity of agricultural production.


It was my honor and privelege to donate two "Darfur" bags to the cause.

Unbelievably, the private donations and bids on other silent auction items brought in over $17,000 in one glorious evening! I like to dream of what this may mean to women and children in Kenya.

Now for a bit of random:

I sometimes get so accustomed to sewing with post consumer fabrics that I forget how much this stuff costs in the real world. All that changes with my relatively rare trip to the fabric store to replenish my store of sewing machine needles and thread.

$113.02 for that paltry pile??!

Wow. Am I glad I don't shop retail for all my supplies!

Which brings me to the final two that got away.

Instead of spending wads of money at Fabricland, I borrowed inspiration from a rice sack, drapery, placemats, a fun label from an ancient necktie, a random scrap of lace, some embroidery pieces, a tea towel, and some quilt squares.

And that's an awful lot to pack into a wallet sized bag!

And finally, the happy hippy bag.

This piece of free spirited love couldn't just go to anyone.

So when my friend Marie came around to purchase two bags to give as gifts, she said these two were just perfect.

So that's just a bit of random goodness for you, my randomly good folks.


Teresa said...

Hi Joyce,

Let me start by saying I received my bag yesterday.
It is wonderful, the picture on your blog does not do it justice. It is beautiful, the colours and fabrics, the attention to detail and the craftmanship. Just lovely!
I wanted to show it to everyone, right away. Now to wait to give as a birthday gift:)

Last year a friend invited me to a conference at the U of W that MCC put on.I went to the talk abut the work with sand dams in Kenya that you are mentioning here( I had just returned from Kenya less than a month earlier). The Africa bug had bitten me.

So wonderful to hear about your support of this project . The bags are so sweet your friend picked up.

I love your recommissioning of "lost" materials.

Truly your eye and talent are amazing:)

joyce said...

So timely, thank you ever so much for the generously kind comments!
Iam very happy indeed.