One particular village is just 15 km from our district headquarters. But this village remains underdeveloped. No one over the age of 10 went to school, because there were no schools until recently. Lack of electric connection keeps the villagers in darkness.
When we visited this area last year, young girls in this area pled with us to start a tailoring center there. We agreed to contribute two machines and the recurring expenses like teacher salary, venue, clothes, and maintenance of the machines. Twelve joined the first class. They paid Rs.100 ($ 1.5) per month as fee. Of that, Rs. 1000 ($ 17) is paid to the teacher as an honorarium. The classes happened in the evening during their free time after doing agriculture work during the day.
One young lady, Vimala, was excited to stitch her own Churidar, a traditional outfit here in India. She purchased the cloth for half the price it would cost her to buy one in the market. Like Vimala, 11 other girls learned to stitch Churidars, skirts, blouses, panties, petticoats and dresses within six months. For the school’s second year, Vimala will be the teacher. Most of the girls who study in tailoring class are part of the transformation group (Bible study group), house church and micro-finance group.