World Relief Memphis is launching its newest empowerment program this spring: Resilient - a vocational sewing program focused on refugee women, and we need you to make it happen! 

Skills Needed:

In order to ensure the success of our Resilient Program sewing class, we need a few volunteers with extensive experience on industrial sewing machines. If that’s you – please let us know! We are also looking for volunteers with TEFL/TESOL background, and general classroom volunteers with these minimum sewing skills: 

  • Thread a sewing machine
  • Wind a bobbin
  • Sew accurate ¼” seams, ½” seams, etc.
  • Make minor adjustments to sewing machine tension
  • Change the needle on a sewing machine
  • Be able to troubleshoot basic sewing machine malfunctions such as improper threading, bobbin inserted incorrectly, etc.
  • Use a ruler and rotary cutter safely and accurately. The instructor can help you if you do not have rotary cutting experience
  • Be willing to read project instructions at home prior to coming to class and (if possible) sew the project yourself

Volunteer Roles and Expectations:

  • Commit to attend at least one class a week for 8 weeks (select from Monday, Wednesday, or both)
  • Comfortable engaging with participants who do not speak English.
  • Sensitive to cultural differences, especially in regards to touching and personal space.
  • Actively involved with the participants in class, engaging with them and encouraging them to learn the provided curriculum as well as increasing their knowledge of the English language.   
  • Willing to help participants follow the instructor’s directions even if it is different than your usual method. Consistency throughout the classroom will help to avoid confusion among the participants.
  • Attend a World Relief Volunteer Orientation AND a sewing volunteer training class prior to the start of the session. These classes are mandatory even if you volunteered in a previous sewing session.
  • Pass a background check.
  • Track all volunteer hours. 

Interested in volunteering with the class, but not a current volunteer? The first step is to fill out a volunteer application. All new volunteers are required to attend a volunteer orientation (next orientations are available here) and undergo a background check before starting.

All volunteers for this new program will then attend sewing volunteer training to learn about this new program and what it looks like to come alongside as volunteers in this new role. This training will be scheduled at a later date. Please share your interest here

We hope you are excited about this program. Please share this with people who love sewing who might be available to volunteer with us in these new roles.