Driving to Dignity

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A message from our Field Logistics Coordinator, Wayne Eaves:

Background on the SewBoss Program

Sparrow Society is an NPC. If, like me, this leaves you a little perplexed give me a moment: We run a business that empowers and uplifts mainly women (over 90%), creating employment, building skills, business, and ultimately stable households. Our SewBoss network was designed to train and hold contracts for clients who want a product designed and delivered to a deadline at export levels. We designed a work from home program, purchasing a company vehicle to enable the delivery of raw materials and the collection of finished items, as well as offering business advice and mentorship.

My Experience in the Field

Over the past 6 months, I have had the privilege of seeing into individual SewBosses lives, where they live, how they live, what keeps them going, and what challenges they face on an ongoing basis. Being invited into someone’s home is a privilege not to be taken lightly.

I have done community-based work for 10 years mostly on a project delivery level, but never on a job creation scale like this. Organisationally, we went from a team of 20 to over 100, trained and equipped SewBosses, creating employment in a pandemic shaped unemployment swirl. These SewBosses became my teachers, friends and coworkers. We had hard conversations around keeping to deadlines, sad conversations around the ongoing death and illness of loved ones and far away relatives they feared they would never see again, to moments of deep compassion. I personally lost a loved one over this time and was inundated with messages of hope, encouragement, and care from the SewBosses.

What I Have Learned

I learned that people want a chance to succeed, for someone to believe in them, and to keep promises! The reality that people signed a contract and that contract was honoured was a big deal. Years of disappointment and mistrust softened over time as our SewBosses realised that we were serious about seeing them succeed.

We are only as human as how we treat each other in times of trouble. Show compassion.
To be able to work from home is a gift, one we were able to share; and how you share matters.

Sparrow Society will continue to offer support, care and co-learning spaces as we work towards our next contract, because to truly succeed as a society we need each other.

Wayne Eaves

Field Logistics Coordinator & Fundraising Manager

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