Houstonians make dresses for Haitian children

August 9, 2010 4:03:43 AM PDT
It's been almost eight months since a devastating earthquake rocked Haiti, killing tens of thousands of people. Many survivors are without permanent homes. People from around the world have given of themselves to help those still struggling to survive in the impoverished nation. And that effort has included a lot of Houstonians, some of whom were busy this weekend with threads and needles in hand.

Inside the Fellowship Hall at the Spring Branch Presbyterian Church, parishioners find themselves doing for others as they would have done for themselves -- sewing beautiful, intricate dresses from pillow cases.

"You can definitely tell the dresses that are coming from Texas, and actually I challenge all of the other states," volunteer Robin Young Ellis said.

It's part of a worldwide effort to provide every girl around the world with a dress.

The 300 made this weekend are headed to Haiti.

"The dignity of having their very own dress, a brand new dress, a clean dress is something we don't think about and take for granted," Young Ellis said.

The labor of love has drawn those in their retirement.

"I've seen pictures of those who just don't have anything," volunteer Edith Jordan said. "They're in old tattered clothes. And thinking about the smile this dress is going to put on her face, it just makes me feel good."

And those who are as young as the recipients themselves are enjoying the dresses too.

"I think a kid would really like it," volunteer Audrey Doyle said. "And I think it's a really pretty heart to go with this dress."

""They're less fortunate, so they should be getting good stuff," volunteer Riley Fairchild said.

This is good stuff. There are handmade patterns, ribbons, stitching -- and love.

When finished, these dresses will be hand delivered to Haitian children, who this year, haven't had a lot of other reasons to smile.

So far, the group "Dress a Girl Around the World" has delivered more than 7,200 dresses to 20 countries and 35 US states.


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