call to arms…er, i mean machines!

Oct 26, 2009

Remember my post back in September about Amazima? Several of you said you were willing to help and now is the time!

I feel called to make colored pencil rolls for these children. I cannot get it out of my mind. I know this is what I am supposed to do, but I cannot do it alone. I need your help and I need it now.

There are over 400 children in the program. There are over 300 families. They said we could make one pencil roll holder for each family, but I want to make one for each child. My goal is 500 rolls. That way, every child can have their very own set of colored pencils that they can take care of and have a way to keep them safe…and they are cute! Any new children that are accepted into the program will be able to be given their own set of pencils.

The best part is, they have been overrun with donations of colored pencils. I have been wasting my time trying to figure out a way to get colored pencils in a huge lot for way cheap, when what I really needed to be doing was sewing!

So, we need 20 women to sew 25 rolls each…or 30 to sew 17…or 40 to sew 13…or 50 to sew 10…or 500 to sew one! Let’s do this! The sewing is easy…I know because I can’t sew hardly at all and I am taking this on! The difficult thing is time – but I know we can do this. A woman is going over in early December and she is going to take our rolls with her.

My goal is to have them shipped to her on December 1st, so they need to be to me no later than November 30. If we have 20 women sewing 25, that means we could sew 5 a week for the next 5 weeks and presto, they are done!!!!

I am still working out the details on the fabric, I have a lot of fabric I am donating to the cause and people are welcome to start with what I have. But donations of money to buy more fabric would be greatly appreciated. I am working on typing up step-by-step directions that anyone can understand. I am also considering switching plans to go with wool if I can get it for a great price, because those rolls would be MUCH quicker to sew. If anyone has any info for me on any of these fronts, please share!

So, what do YOU need to do? Write in the comments section that you are willing to sew and I will add you to the email list that will get updates as they are available. Enlist your mothers, sisters, friends, and neighbors in the project. You could collect them from everyone over Thanksgiving and then bring them to me on Monday the 30th. Spend the month of November sewing to bring JOY to some very destitute children in Uganda.

We can do this…I know it.

Here is some inspiration from April at By Small Means:

Pencil Roll Another Pencil Roll

or the wool one from Skip To My Lou:


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  1. Kami

    I will help. My machine is on the blink so I need to get it fixed and I don’t want to commit to more than I can actually do so for now I will say I can do ten. If I try it and find it goes fast, I’m willing to do more. Thanks for giving us this opportunity to serve these people. I have a few material scraps, but I don’t think it is what you are looking for. I will donate some money for material at gym on Friday. I would like CaRynn to help too. I’ll talk to her about it as well.

  2. Not I per say…but I know a handful of ladies who can and DO sew. I will see if I can enlist some help on this project. (Let me know when you have a pattern)

  3. Cosette

    Count me in! The cotton one looks time consuming, but I do have a stash of quilting fabrics that could work. Get me some instructions and I’ll go for it.

  4. Jana

    Madison and I would love to be in. Would fleece work? You can get a lot of remnant fleece for cheap.

  5. Katherine

    I can do some.

  6. Robin

    I need the step-by-step instructions. They look really easy, but I’d feel better with them. I have some odds and ends material I can use. Just let me know.

  7. TinaH

    I would be willing to sew some.

    • tracy

      We are up to eleven women…spread the word and lets get more! I am making the pattern right now and it should be ready by tonight!

  8. I’m willing. . . I better get my current projects done now so I can dive into another!

  9. Dane'

    I would like to help. Send me the pattern, please. I have lots of fabric depending on what is needed for the pencil rolls. As for how many I can do, it will depend on how long it takes to make them. I think I can commit to 15.

  10. Sharon

    I would like to help with your pencil holder project. I have lots of fabric. Please send me the pattern. My daughter will be able to bring them to you.

  11. Jenny

    I would love to help, too. I have a bunch of random pieces of fabric that might work. I’m not a great seamstress, though. I do have a friend who is a professional seamstress and she might want to help. Send me the pattern, let’s do this!

  12. tracy

    Wowsers! We are up to 18 women!! The tutorial should be ready late tonight or tomorrow morning and then we can get to work.

    Thank you – each one of you – for taking this on. I am so excited about it and can’t get the picture of happy little Ugandan’s out of my mind…can you see them, too?

  13. Sally

    I can sew some. I can’t guarantee they’ll be as cute as those ones, but My Mom just sent me the cutest ALOHA print material ever! So, I want to spread my Aloha to Uganda. :)

  14. Tracy, I’m putting this on apron girls… you’ll get your 50 seamstresses then, I’m betting! :)

  15. I am in, don’t know where you are but I am in Cache Valley Utah, will be posting this on my blog soon!

  16. Sha Nielson

    I would love to help. Don’t know if I could finish 50, but lets hope we get enough women and I only have to sew 10.;)

  17. girlsmama

    I can definitely do some!

  18. I have a lot on my plate at the moment, being in a couple of charity things at the moment, the best thing i can do is write a post on my blog and direct them here to you.
    It should add a few more readers/helpers.
    All the best

  19. I’ll give this a go… although I think I’m a long way from you as I’m in the UK and we’re in the middle of a postal strike, so I may have to get cracking! I have plenty of scraps, just a case of picking the right ones. Do you have a pattern?

  20. I would like to help. Do you have a pattern or do I need to figure it out?

  21. Anne

    Yes sir! But I mustn’t have hit send! I said “I will do a couple. If only I had some pony tail holders that had no wear or tear.” Remember me saying that?

    • tracy

      Anne, nope, didn’t ever hear/see that one! Thanks for joining us…we need everyone we can get!

  22. Shae

    I would love to help! I don’t have any fabric and money is tight right now. If you have any that I could use I would be willing to sew them up for you. I will keep looking for some inexpensive material. Either way…I will do what I can. I think this is a great idea. Thanks for letting me participate!

  23. Kerri Lindstrom

    I have started cutting some out. I think I will have about 12. I may do more but I will commit to 12 right now. I’ll bring them to your house or to church. Thanks for inspiring me!


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