In June 2008, the Soweto Sewing Company was formed in Braamfischerville, the government housing area adjacent to Soweto. The area is rife with unemployment and many homes are without a breadwinner. Five women came together to create an income-generating project they hoped will benefit not just their families but the broader community using their pastime activity – sewing.
The Soweto Sewing Company was established as a creative, income-generating project to provide its employees with a livelihood and to benefit the broader community. Sponsors from the United States provided most of the initial capital, including two sewing machines and one over-locker.
It soon became clear that the group’s level of workmanship was high, thanks to a couple of the staff having had previous experience in the sewing industry. Since its formation, the group has developed its skills and expanded its range of products. They are constantly on the look-out for fresh ideas and new markets for their goods. They have proved to be competent at translating new ideas into innovative designs.
Products & Market
The Soweto Sewing Company’s product range includes bags for both retail and industrial application, and bibs, aprons and other commodities for use at the 2010 World Cup Soccer event. The group also produces household items such as placemats, tablecloths and coaster sets. Its products make ideal corporate gifts – not only are they attractive and functional items, but they will make a difference in the lives of members of a disadvantaged community.
A South Africa company has undertaken to provide support for the organisation in a number of ways and to assist it in the marketing of its products. The company built and sponsored exhibition stands for the Soweto Sewing Company at Market Johannesburg, Africa’s Big Seven show, Meetings Africa and Markex/Madex