RefugeeMade

Arizona-crafted // Globally-inspired // Refugee-made

Phoenix, Arizona On Etsy since 2019

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RefugeeMade

Arizona-crafted // Globally-inspired // Refugee-made

Phoenix, Arizona | 467 Sales

Announcement    The road to a new life is sometimes paved with thread and a little creativity...

That’s what Haseeba, Habiba and more than 100 other women have learned through a studio-style sewing class offered by the Women’s Empowerment Program sponsored by Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest.

The sewing class is just one of a multitude of services provided by the Phoenix-based non-profit refugee resettlement agency to women and families seeking better lives after fleeing violence or persecution in places like Burma, Afghanistan, Somali, and the D.R. Congo.

“I’ve been though a lot and I wasn’t sure I could do it,” said Haseeba, who fled Pakistan with her children in 2012. “But I started sewing. They heard my story and really encouraged and supported me.”

Using donated thread, fabric and refurbished sewing machines, the women create handbags, aprons and many other products. Last year 70 women in the program earned about $16,000 – money that helped with rent, food and other necessities of life. And that was before RefugeeMade, the brand new Etsy store of the Women's Empowerment Program.

Dana Smith, the organization’s lead sewing volunteer in Tucson, said the program also helps women reclaim their sense of normalcy and creates a path to renewed hope and joy.

“Forget for half a day that you’re a refugee,” Smith said. “You’re just talking with your friends and laughing and seam-ripping and being creative like any other person trying to make a living.”

Launch of RefugeeMade coincides with the March 8, 2019, International Women’s Day, a global day of celebration recognizing the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women around the world. The event, held since 1911, also marks a call to action in support of gender parity.

Habiba, a refugee originally from Afghanistan, said the Women’s Empowerment Program sewing class has helped her build a new life for herself and her four children.

“I’m very happy,” Habiba said through an interpreter. “It’s been very good for me. I can buy a few things for my children. I can make something of my life.”

Announcement

Last updated on Jul 1, 2020

The road to a new life is sometimes paved with thread and a little creativity...

That’s what Haseeba, Habiba and more than 100 other women have learned through a studio-style sewing class offered by the Women’s Empowerment Program sponsored by Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest.

The sewing class is just one of a multitude of services provided by the Phoenix-based non-profit refugee resettlement agency to women and families seeking better lives after fleeing violence or persecution in places like Burma, Afghanistan, Somali, and the D.R. Congo.

“I’ve been though a lot and I wasn’t sure I could do it,” said Haseeba, who fled Pakistan with her children in 2012. “But I started sewing. They heard my story and really encouraged and supported me.”

Using donated thread, fabric and refurbished sewing machines, the women create handbags, aprons and many other products. Last year 70 women in the program earned about $16,000 – money that helped with rent, food and other necessities of life. And that was before RefugeeMade, the brand new Etsy store of the Women's Empowerment Program.

Dana Smith, the organization’s lead sewing volunteer in Tucson, said the program also helps women reclaim their sense of normalcy and creates a path to renewed hope and joy.

“Forget for half a day that you’re a refugee,” Smith said. “You’re just talking with your friends and laughing and seam-ripping and being creative like any other person trying to make a living.”

Launch of RefugeeMade coincides with the March 8, 2019, International Women’s Day, a global day of celebration recognizing the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women around the world. The event, held since 1911, also marks a call to action in support of gender parity.

Habiba, a refugee originally from Afghanistan, said the Women’s Empowerment Program sewing class has helped her build a new life for herself and her four children.

“I’m very happy,” Habiba said through an interpreter. “It’s been very good for me. I can buy a few things for my children. I can make something of my life.”

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About RefugeeMade

Sales 467
On Etsy since 2019

Empowering refugee women since 2008.

Thank you for visiting our store! By purchasing these products, you are helping to support a refugee woman on her journey to integration in sunny Arizona.

Here’s what we’re all about:
Founded in 2008 by Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest in Phoenix, Arizona, the Refugee Women’s Empowerment Program (WEP) was created to support the integration needs of hundreds of refugee women every year through supportive programming. We provide sewing classes, women’s health and nutrition classes, onsite childcare, leadership development, yoga, computer classes, and more to refugee women in Phoenix and Tucson. All the items sold at AZRefugeeWomenCreate are unique, handmade items sewn, woven, and crocheted with love by refugee women in sunny Arizona. The sewing program provides the women with a chance to earn supplemental income, socialize, get a sewing machine of their own, and practice their English. 80% of the proceeds from each sale go to the woman who created the product while the remaining 20% are reinvested in the program.

The Refugee Women’s Empowerment Program (WEP) is a program of Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest. Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest creates a foundation for 67,000 men, women and children to thrive across Arizona through refugee and immigration, aging and disability, children and family, and emergency services. We stabilize individuals and families during times of crisis and transition, we build a self-reliant foundation and we preserve dignity and respect. To learn more about our organization please visit our website at www.lss-sw.org.

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  • LSS-SW

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    Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest creates a foundation for 67,000 men, women and children to thrive across Arizona through refugee and immigration, aging and disability, children and family, and emergency services. More at www.lss-sw.org.

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