We are pleased and excited to announce that both co-founders, Maureen and Paula, have been recognised for their commitment to social enterprise and community.
Maureen has been invited to this year’s Buckingham Palace Garden Party on 21 May, and Paula has been selected by The High Sheriff of Lancashire to receive an award on 8 March at the Preston County Hall event.
Both are being recognised for their years of outstanding commitment and support, including Maureen’s decades-long working relationship with a local women’s refuge.
Congratulations, Maureen and Paula!
A reporting project by Hazel Sheffield, Far Nearer documents local projects and people building economic resilience in the UK.
The Sewing Rooms was recently featured, and the conversation between co-founder Paula and Hazel includes insights, goals and potential challenges ahead.
You can read the interview in full here.
The Skelmersdale Place Board is made up from key Skelmersdale leaders from a range of business and public sector organisations. Board members provide strategic leadership in the promotion and development of Skelmersdale. Their tasks include:
- Directing and overseeing delivery of the Place Plan
- Considering strategies and projects to see if they should form part of the Plan
- Championing the Skelmersdale brand narrative and approach
- Overseeing the Ambassadors programme and
- Providing support and advice for the local authority and acting as a sounding board on key place issues.
The Place Board is currently recruiting Ambassadors; more information is available in the attached.
Paula says of her role on the board, “I’m very proud and thankful to be able to help spread the word about what a fantastic place Skelmersdale is, for business, for living and for creating a better future for all of us.
“I’m looking forward to seeing the variety of things we will accomplish as we work together as a Board and in partnership with many amazing local businesses and people.”
The Sewing Rooms has been awarded a grant from the Community Foundation for Lancashire to run a nine-month wellbeing sewing project with the Liberty Centre (previously known as the West Lancashire Women’s Refuge). The funding comes from the Government’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport’s Tampon Tax Fund.
Led by the Sewing Rooms’ Laura Scott, the project will guide groups of women and girls through the processes of designing and creating decorative community banners. The three themes depicted by the banners will by “A safe place to heal,” “Education and building futures,” and “Moving on.”
The completed banners will be unveiled at the Centre’s AGM in November 2019.
All skill levels will be catered for during the project. The weekly sessions will be underpinned by the Five Ways to Wellbeing, which will create the framework for individual development plans for each participant. The plans will focus on health, wellbeing, self-confidence and local social and economic involvement.
Politically, economically and socially we know there are challenges ahead. We use this new year to rededicate ourselves and our efforts to helping solve community problems through social enterprise, a cornerstone of true equality.
All the best from the Sewing Rooms team! We thank you for your continued support and hope to meet you or work with you sometime in 2019.
Thanks to the Design Council for featuring the Sewing Rooms’ work on the Transform Ageing project in its December 2018 newsletter. You can read the newsletter here, and watch our video here. Thanks to all our supporters over the years, too, for helping us reach this position of influence and expertise.
Social enterprise depends on the relationships people have with each other and with the organisations they support, whether that be financially or through time and other donations. Working with local and regional organisations and businesses is an important part of the Sewing Rooms’ success and goals. We strengthen our communities by helping to support and build bonds and opportunities for our neighbours.
To that end, we were grateful and pleased to have been asked to make grocery bags for the Northern Harrogate GroceryAid ball on 1 December 2018!
And a bit before that in November, we worked with local schoolchildren at the co-op celebration day in Sandy Land and Upholland stores to create a sew fab science banner. Our talented Laura Scott led the sessions, and we also worked with St Richards Primary School. Such an inspiration seeing what the children created!
If you have an idea for a project or partnership, please give us a call; we’d love to discuss the opportunities.
Sew fab science sewing in progress
Close up of part of the banner
A young sewer
The Sewing Rooms recently completed several projects showcasing the innovative reuse of materials and creative skill of our teams. Having already worked with Sheffield Hallum University on the student bar, we were excited to be asked back to help refurbish the student guild. Reupholstering furniture, making new cushions and building new pieces of furniture – all from upcycled materials – not only gave the space a new look and feel, it also kept many kilos of waste from landfill.
And who could resist a beautiful dog bed like these? Our “Out of this World” range is a series of luxury dog beds made from reused materials and exquisite Panaz fabrics. This could be the Christmas gift for the dog lover in your life!
Get in touch if you’d like more information!
The completed Student Guild space
New cushions for the students
Dog bed in process
Looking good and feeling snug
The team at Panaz recently hosted the Sewing Rooms’ team for a fantastic festive session of sewing! We made decorations, listened to Christmas music and of course, had a few nibbles! The support of Panaz through the company’s donations of fabric continues to enable The Sewing Rooms to provide the one-of-a-kind products and services we are known for. We cannot thank them enough.
And a couple of weeks earlier, we had an inspiring session with the Panaz team led by CEO Tony Attard to discuss future growth potential and opportunities. We look forward to further development!
Festivities in action!
Sew fab designs!
Discussing future development!
The Sewing Rooms co-founders Paula Gamester and Maureen Fazal have had a very busy Autumn. Speaking at a number of events around the country, they have shared their expertise gained through first-hand experience.
Most recently, Paula and Maureen spoke at the BBI Health and Social Care HOMES Summit that explored how housing affects health and wellbeing. Earlier this year, they presented their shared vision for ageing well to The South West Academic Health Science Network. And locally, Paula and Maureen spoke at the Lancashire 50+ Forum in September.
Collaboration is key in the social sector, and social enterprise is a cornerstone of strong communities. As a force for good, and through the work of dedicated individuals and organisations, social enterprise is making inroads into reducing inequalities and improving life for people around the world. Please get in touch to find out ways you can get involved – from #BuyingSocial for gifts to donating fabrics and items or your time, the entire team at The Sewing Rooms would love to hear from you!