Zaman International is continuing to serve its clients amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and that includes virtual sewing instruction as part of its BOOST vocational arts programming. Recently, The Sewing Machine Project granted 25 sewing machines for Zaman to loan out to its students.
“I reached out to The Sewing Machine Project in August because we needed sewing machines so students could continue instruction at home,” said Gigi Salka, Director of BOOST. “The Sewing Machine Project delivered for Zaman and it has helped these women continue to pursue careers through our program. We are so thankful for their support.”
Currently there are 26 students receiving instruction remotely. Students attend sewing classes using Google Meet, quizzes and homework are administered using Google Forms, and students snap a picture of their completed sewing project and upload it to Google Classroom or send it to the teacher via email.
“Instruction is continuing on schedule and students are progressing well,” said Salka. “Their skills have actually improved because they are able to spend more time on their sewing projects at home to do more practice. It is also helpful that all the machines are the same, it makes it easier for the teacher to troubleshoot and for the students to help each other outside of class.”
The BOOST sewing program provides multi-level sewing instruction ranging from alterations to custom tailoring and use of industrial sewing machines to help students who progress through the program enter the job market or start their own business.
During COVID shutdown Zaman transitioned to online instruction, including our sewing program.
In 2016, The Sewing Machine Project originally granted Zaman sewing machines and tables currently in the organization’s sewing center. The Sewing Machine Project was formed in 2005 for the purpose of bringing sewing into peoples’ lives by offering sewing machines, tools, and education. The non-profit works with groups committed to using the machines to provide opportunities to create, learn new skills, build self-confidence, and contribute to their own livelihoods and the well-being of their families and communities.