From Bonnie Ledet, Adviser, Girl Scout Cadette Troop 84074
For some little girls, a dress made out of a pillowcase and seam tape wouldn’t mean much. But for little girls living in poverty around the world, a pillowcase dress may be their most prized – and sometimes only – dress.
That knowledge spurred Yuma Girl Scout Cadette Troop 84074 to learn to sew. They made forty dresses complete with a handkerchief doll, a note wishing the recipient well, and a new pair of underwear tucked in the pockets of each dress. Four seventh grade girls, Brittany Ross, Tara Hickman, Destiny Sprouse and Jaeden Chavez, learned to thread a sewing machine, make straight and zigzag stitches, make a casing and insert elastic, sew on seam binding, attach a pocket, and add lace or rick-rack to make the dress a little prettier. This was quite an accomplishment for girls who had never sewn before!
With the help of their advisors, Brenda Ross and Bonnie Ledet, and mom, Liz Hickman, the girls started making dresses from pillowcases according to the directions from the Dress-A Girl organization. Dress-A Girl is a nonprofit Christian organization that offers templates and advice for making dresses out of pillowcases and seam binding. Dresses are then shipped to girls in Africa and countries in crisis, such as Haiti.
The girls soon switched from using pillowcases to making the dresses from new material donated by Pat Korf. Pat also gave many yards of rick-rack, lace and other notions. Center Pivot Irrigation made a donation that allowed the troop to purchase the other materials needed to complete the project. The girls very much appreciate the help provided that allowed them to make the dresses at very little cost to the troop.
The Girl Scout mission statement says that Girl Scouts builds girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place. It took courage for the girls to use a sewing machine for the first time. They gained confidence as they successfully completed the dresses and showed their character as they took the time to make the dresses and dolls to be sent out to other girls around the globe, making the world a better place.