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Spreading Embroidery Joy to Lesotho

21 September 2021

Two Mapula Co-ordinators, Bertha Rengane and Pinky Resenga, have received their passports, have had their Corona virus jabs and are cautiously excited about the upcoming visit to Lesotho in September. We are holding thumbs that this trip, twice postponed, will take place. Neither of the Mapula women has ventured over the borders of South Africa before.

To make this possible Soroptimist International of Pretoria hosted a cocktail fundraiser with a theme inspired by a collection of liquers which had been donated by a departing diplomat. Our mixologists got into the spirit of the evening and donned our beautiful Mapula aprons.

Supporters were cajoled into buying Mapula items, raffle tickets for a collectable Nceka (Tsonga traditional garment) and an authentic, heritage Lesotho blanket both donated by old friends of Mapula: Marsja Hall-Green and Aranda Textile Mills.

Happy Winner of the Nceka

Lucky Winner of the Lesotho blanket

This trip is a partnership with the Rotary Club of Pretoria Hatfield which has an international outreach programme consisting of an annual visit to the village of Ramabanta in Lesotho where Pretoria Rotarians, together with Rotarians from the Maloti Maseru Club, interact with the local community. Skills training for local scholars, school supplies and uniforms for the local primary school, tree planting with the villagers are some of the activities we have enjoyed together.

Three Soroptomists from the SI Pretoria-Tshwane Club, together with the two embroiderers from Mapula Embroideries, will join the Rotary group for the trip to Lesotho where they will all work with some of the local women to teach their embroidery skills. It is hoped that this transfer of skills will lead to some income generation for the local women.

We’ll follow this story as it unfolds and share the experiences of the trip and what it achieves in a future blog.

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