Friday, 30 September 2011

Dress Distribution with Zonta Ladies, CDO Chapter

Monday afternoon, the 26th of Sept 2011, I finally made it to Cagayan de Oro City (southern part of the Philippines) after 1-1/2 hours travelling by plane where I wanted to personally experience distributing dresses to girls and women of the area that was particularly selected for this occasion. The place was called Mambuaya and about half-an-hour from the city by car. As we got nearer the place, the ride was becoming bumpier as the road was not made of asphalt nor cemented. The distribution happened in a small day care center of about 25 children but half of them were boys. These little boys were watching on the sides when the little girls were being dressed but they never complained that they did not get one for themselves. When word got around that there were dresses being given to small girls, several mothers (or nanays as they are called in the local dialect) living near the daycare center came with their children tagged along.

Together with the Zonta* ladies of the city, it was such a great experience that coming back to Sydney made me more determined to make and collect as many dresses as I can to give to the children and women of this beloved city. I have also decided that from now on to include trousers or long shorts in my campaign for the little boys as they too deserve to own one. I know that this campaign is called Dress A Girl Around the World but after seeing the little boys during the distribution just watching their small friends being dressed I thought they should also receive one for themselves. In places or areas like this and sometimes not easily reachable unless you know someone or a group who knows how to get to these places (and many thanks to the Zonta ladies!) and safely of course, not only the little girls or teen girls need to be dressed but also the little boys. In fact, even the mothers or the nanays deserved them too. You should check out the very big smile on the face of the teacher when she knew that she was getting one as well. Luckily I had one dress which I thought would fit her and gave it to her for a job very well done in patiently making sure these children get to learn and get educated for their future. As the saying goes, these children are our future.

After all the girls were completely dressed we still had a few left and these were bigger in sizes. We saw that the dresses would fit several of the mothers or the 'nanays', so we gave it to them and asked them to wear it and this brought smiles on their faces too. I didnt have the heart to say 'no' when they asked if they could also have one.

 More pictures from this distribution are available for everyone to see on the right navigation bar under 'Dress A Girl Australia Sep 2011 Distribution - CDO Phils'. I think I have uploaded all the pictures taken from this distribution area. Have a look and see if any of the dresses were made by you. You should be proud the way I felt very proud dressing these girls, teacher and nanays. Without you and everyone who contributed to this campaign, this Dress A Girl event would'nt have happened. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for making these girls and women own at least one dress for they all deserve one.

The Zonta ladies I was lucky enough to have the chance to work with in this distribution were members of the Zonta International, Cagayan de Oro City Chapter, Philippines and I hope to continue on with this work and perhaps other projects I have in mind in partnership with them in the future. Thank you to Delsa Mortola, Sol Marie Ucab and Ana Marie dela Fuente and a special thanks to Ana Marie for coordinating and making sure this event happened on the 27th of Sept 2011.

**** Zonta International founded in 1919 is a global organization of executives and professionals working together to advance the status of women worldwide through service and advocacy.

If you like what you see and would like to join Dress A Girl Australia's campaign to dress girls around the world, please send an email to    

Saturday, 24 September 2011

A Fabric Parcel for Dress A Girl - Philippines

The Sydney-Manila flight I took was delayed due to an airline strike and I did not get to the hotel till around 9pm (we were supposed to arrive about 3 hours earlier). The first thing I did the following day was find a sim card to purchase for my phone so it would be easy for me to get in touch with friends I wanted to see.  I had planned to stay in Manila for 3 days before leaving for the city of Cagayan de Oro where I had planned to do another distribution.

While looking for a shop or mall stall that sells sim cards I happen to pass by a fabric shop. Being a fabric hoarder, without hesitation I went to check out their items which were mostly on sale and then came an idea. Why not purchase some fabrics and give it to Dress A Girl Philippines as a donation from Dress A Girl Australia. Now there was a real need to find and purchase a sim card so I can get in touch with someone I met in the Dress A Girl Around the world member site who comes from the Philippines (Manila) a couple of weeks before I left for my holiday.

I finally was able to get in touch with Joy who, by the way, happens to be a fashion designer. I told her that I was planning to buy some fabrics for her to make into dresses and if she could pick up the parcel from the hotel where I was staying as I was about to leave for Cagayan de Oro the following day. She agreed so I went back to the fabric shop and bought some fabrics that would probably make about 6 or 8 or 10 dresses and half-a-dozen pillowcases. With these purchases, I think it will bring smiles to about a dozen little girls somewhere in Manila who deserves to own at least one dress.

On the same day I bought the items, I also met the wife of my ex-work colleague and spoke about the dresses and was very happy to make the distribution on behalf of Dress A Girl Australia. I left with her about 50 dresses to distribute when she has made her decision where and when to make the distribution.

Thursday, 22 September 2011

On my way to the Philippines

All dresses are packed and today, am leaving for the Philippines to make Dress A Girl Australia's first scheduled distribution of dresses. I have chosen the Philippines as the first recipient of dresses I have collected as I believe there are a lot of small girls, teens and women, young and old who needs these dresses the most.

There are two most likely places where the distribution is going to happen. One in the Greater Metro Manila which will be done by the wife of an ex-work colleague of mine and the other distribution will take place in Cagayan de Oro city in the southern part of the Philippines about 1-1/2 hours away from Manila by plane. The distribution will be made in partnership with the ladies of Zonta International, Cagayan de Oro City Chapter.

I am greatly excited as I have never experienced first-hand this kind of activity before and most especially giving away dresses contributed by several individuals and small business owners. Giving dresses to small girls and women who deserves to own at least one dress. Giving dresses some of which were sewn by me from my fabric collection or fabrics bought by friends and family. I would love to see and experience how one feels when you see someone wearing a dress you made yourself.

The Philippines is a big country and there are so many places I fully believe that are not easily reachable and needs help. Dress A Girl Australia will focus its dress distribution in nearby Asian countries and Australia. Watch this page for more details about this distribution. I should be back in two weeks time.

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Two dresses in honor of Jane's memory

These 2 pretty dresses are on their way to Dress A Girl Virginia from Dress A Girl Australia in Jane's memory. Two little girls from Belize will be the lucky recipients in honor of Jane who passed away on the 5th of Sept 2011. If you are wondering who Jane is, here is her story :

About eight months ago Jane’s daughter-in-law went to Haiti and came back with stories from an orphanage. After seeing the photos, Jane said she wanted every little girl to have a new dress at least once in her lifetime. She and her mother immediately started making dresses. They sent dresses to Haiti, Dominican Republic, Brazil and Appalachia. Jane has had health issues since she was twenty and was now 55. She became very ill and discovered she had multiple myloma. Jane passed away on Sept 5th. She never knew she was an official member of Dress a Girl. Before she passed away she told her mother that she wanted her to continue with Dress a Girl and was excited to find that the dresses were personally given to each girl and that we are a Christian organization. Her mother’s heart is broken but she wants to continue making dresses in Jane’s memory.
If you want to be like Dress A Girl Australia and want to make dresses for little girls around the world who deserves to own at least one dress in her lifetime, please send an email to You will not regret it.

Saturday, 10 September 2011

Sew for Charity Drive Update

A few weeks ago, I featured a facebook group called The Sewing Library who was running their first ever 'Sew for Charity' Drive and had chosen Dress A Girl Around the World through Dress A Girl Australia as their recipient.

Dress A Girl Australia is very happy and proud to let everyone know that the ladies in the group are doing a very tremendous job showing their support for a very worthwhile drive of making dresses for girls around the world. My sincerest thanks to all  the members of the group. Everyone deserves lots and lots of pats on the back for a job very well done !

Here is the link to the group's album that showcases all the dresses they have made so far for everyone to see -
                   Sew for Charity Drive - Dress A Girl Around the World Album


To know more about the Dress A Girl Around the World Dress A Girl Australia or if you are interested in joining us on this very worthwhile campaign, please send an email to

** The Sewing Library is a facebook group created with the hope of a community coming together to share their sewing know-how including great tutorials, tips, hints and advices. For those ladies out there who wants to know more and perhaps would like to join the group, click here or copy and paste the URL below in your browser -.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

30th and last dress for Sewing Marathon 1

This is my 30th and last dress made for the Sewing Marathon 1 which ended yesterday. And what a final 30th day it was because I could not finish the dress as I run out of bias tape. (hahah!)  Since I started the marathon I only allowed for a certain number of hours to spend making a dress, well, in fact 2 hours only and I should not go beyond the 2 hours so I still have time left for other chores and getting a good night sleep of course as I have to go to work the following day. Me and my sewing machine marathon 1 total number is 30 dresses for 30 days for 30 lucky little girls around the world. 

Sewing is not in my schedule for the next 2 weeks of September. Next week I will be busy finishing attaching labels to the dresses in preparation for distribution. I am on a mission to an undisclosed place to distribute dresses. I will be applying for a leave of absence from work for 2 weeks tomorrow and everyone will know where this secret place would be when I come back bringing pictures with me. 

I hope to finish my sew-along preparation and post it before I go. The sew-along will be posted on this site, in my facebook page and in the 2 groups I created details and links of which will be provided. I know I have been delaying this sew-along and personally I want to be able to do a sew-along so it definitely will happen very soon.

Sunday, 4 September 2011

September activities - Dress A Girl Australia

Me and my sewing machine Sewing Marathon 1 is about to end and by Wednesday, 7th of Sept I will have 30 more dresses to add to Dress A Girl Australia dresses. 30 more little girls around the world will own at least one dress. Watch out for more Sewing Marathons.

Two weeks ago I wanted to hold a sew-along but due to a busy schedule it did not materialize. I was not able to prepare and organize what was needed for the Sew-Along. So this month or before September ends, I hope to be able to fulfill this promise of a sew-along for anyone who wants to join.

Also scheduled for this month is distribution of dresses. This will happen towards the end of the month. I cannot tell you where 100 dresses will be distributed but it will happen. Most of the dresses that will be given away are now labelled and will soon be packed. Am very excited and looking forward to the distribution. Once this is done, Dress A Girl Australia's focus in the months ahead will be to collect more dresses for Christmas. The magic number for Christmas is 125 dresses.

Dress A Girl Australia welcomes anyone who wants to join in this campaign. Unfortunately, because I work full time during the day Monday to Friday, it is not that easy for me to hold sewing events thus my focus is on sew-alongs. Anyone is fully welcome to gather their friends and families to hold sewing events anywhere you are located. Dress A Girl Around the World flyer is available for anyone who wants to print and distribute to help spread the word. Click here for the Dress A Girl flyer.

For more details on this campaign, please feel free to send an email to I will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.

Saturday, 3 September 2011

Sewing Marathon 1 - Day 16 to 20 Dresses

Sewing Marathon 1 is about to end and am still on track on one dress a day for 30 days.  Busy days in the past week but finally made a chance to take shots of dresses from Day 16 to 20. Day 21 to 26 dresses are made but still havent taken pictures of it. By Tuesday which is the last day for the Sewing Marathon 1, Dress A Girl Australia would have 30 more dresses for little girls around the world.

My fabric collection for Dress A Girl Australia is dwindling and soon I will run out of fabrics and/or pillowcases to make into dresses. I am wishing that someone out there would like to donate some pieces of fabrics they no longer want to make into dresses.

To know more about Dress A Girl Australia, please send an email to and would gladly explain what Dress A Girl Australia is all about.