Thursday, 30 January 2014

Donation Acknowledgement FY14/1 #3 - 32 Dresses from Suzanne

When I received an email from Suzanne Nixon requesting for some labels I got so excited about it. Last year she sent me dresses with something special inside each pocket. A mini doll and I was hoping that she would do the same this year which she did. She sent 32 dresses and 24 dolls and this is donation acknowledgement #3 which I am making an exception (again acknowledging early) because I just have the right location for these dresses with dolls to go to. My doctor cousin who goes to hinterlands or remote locations  in CDO Philippines (and where only doctors dare to go) to treat small kids and I want her to give each kid that she and her group treats with a dress and a doll inside the pocket. I know the number is limited but it sure would make 24 little girls happy. And am sending the parcels to her (in addition to other dresses) at the end of March (so that means I have to pack them).
Here are the 32 dresses and 24 dolls that Suzanne sent me this time -
and here is a close-up picture of a doll that goes inside the pocket of each dress -
To Suzanne, thank you so much for your kindness and generosity and thank you as well to the mini dolls that came with the dresses. These items will definitely bring big smiles and wide eyes filled with excitement and surprise to the 24 lucky little girls who get to receive them. Thank you so much.

Dress Distribution #55 - Children of India c/o Mercy and Grace Charity Parcel 3A

This is an advance packing for another parcel to India c/o Mercy & Grace Charity and is Dress Distribution No 55. This parcel is sealed and will only leave my humble abode when am financially ready. That is what is keeping me busy at nights these days. Packing parcels and putting them on standby until I have raised the needed dollars to pay for postage. My budget this year is divided between sending dresses and my wish to have a well built in Uganda. Unfortunately I dont have that many markets this year as this is my travel year and the dates are in conflict with my travel dates so I hope I get to sell more items from my shop. Will see how it goes. When the going gets tough (including unwanted negative feedback)...I guess the tough gets going.

Anyway, this parcel has 85 dresses inside but the picture/album only shows 84. I seem to be missing one picture. I decided not to open the plastic bags anymore since my left arm started to become sore again. I think it is from the pressure of making sure I fit 6 plastic bags inside the box and since Saturday I have packed about 5 parcels. 
So here is the parcel that is on standy until am ready to send -
here is the count of the contents of the parcel (to show there were 85 inside and am sure my math was correct  - I always do this count in every parcel -
here are the contents of the parcel -
made possible by the following donors -
1) Sandra Turnbull
2) Pam of Threading My Way
3) Ladies of Kapunda Sewing Group with a few sponsored by Elaine McGlashan, Chelsea & Chloe, Kerry
4) Frances Cornish
5) Linda Smyth
6) Sarah Tanmahapran
7) Monika Osvald
8) Cassie Ashley
9) Nicole Devet
10) Katherine Nott
11) Betty Barrett

No undies on this parcel and except for the missing picture, all donors of dresses have been identified.

To see larger images of the contents of this parcel, please click here. For more details on this distribution (and also at a later stage when feedback is received) please click here or click on the special 'Dress Distribution' tab which you can find at the top of this page.

Thank you so much to all the donors who made this parcel possible. Thank you for the materials, time, money and effort you all spent in making these dresses being given to the less fortunate children of India . Your kindness and generosity is very much appreciated. Thank you.


If you feel the need to enquire about this distribution, please feel free to send an email to dressagirlaustralia@gmail.com. Thank you.


Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Contact Details

When sending dresses to donate to this campaign, can you please make sure you include a note with your contact details inside the parcel so i can easily contact anyone if i have questions on your parcel. Or you can fill up the dress submission form which you can find in the left navigation pane of my blog. An email address is good enough. This way it will make it easier for me to decide what to do with dresses that need repairs (i.e. Too thin and requires lining) or used dresses. I do not have time to make repairs and actually i do not know how to repair a dress but to show my appreciation and respect to anyone who contributes i want to be able to contact anyone if i think there is a minor problem. Thank you.

Big sizes ...where are they going

I have a collection of donated dresses (about 20) which I think will fit teenagers – ages between 16 to 18 or maybe 20. They were labelled as size 12 or 14 but I think these are too big for 12 or 14 kids. So I asked a few contacts from different locations/countries  if they can find me teenagers who they think would love to own these dresses and one  responded that there are a lot of teenagers who would be happy to receive these dresses. These teenagers do not go to school because of poverty. Some of them are still in the elementary grades and takes them longer to finish school because their parents cannot afford to pay for their tuition fees. They sometimes go to school and  drop out in the middle of the year because there is no money anymore to pay for the fees and not knowing when they are able to go back. So I have decided to pack up these dresses to send to the Philippines (again since it is nearer and they deserve it too... and can save me a lot on postage - stuff is a bit heavy due to size :-)) and give to these teenagers to wear. To let them know that even if they cannot go back to school yet,  someone is thinking about them and thinks they still deserve to  own a nice dress.  For them  they can only dream of a better life while some of us are already living it .

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Another Friendly Reminder on Used Clothing

Not sure why I need to do this but just want to remind everyone again that I do NOT accept used clothing. Any used clothing received will not be included in any distribution so please do not send any at all. Used clothing attracts high customs duties in some locations as they think it is going to be sold and not given to the children and I have no allocation for customs duties. So if you want to help, help up to the point where the parcels are delivered to the recipients without any hassle at all. Thank you.

Monday, 27 January 2014

Dress Distribution #54 - Children of Malabon Manila (c-o Norie Bordador) Parcel 1a

I must have labelled the plastic bags with wrong months as I noticed while sorting that I have dresses received in the earlier months of the year 2013 and no longer have those received between May to August. Tsk...tsk..

Anyway, this is Parcel #1 of 3 for the Children of Malabon, Manila again c-o Norie Bordador. It is a parcel of 49 dresses, 18 sets of t-shirts and pairs of shorts, 22 headscarves and other hair accessories and 50 mini bags. The distribution which has been organized by Norie and with the help of other group of volunteers and with the assistance of Sr Ma Rosalina Luzon, the MCJ Coordinator will be made at Sto Nino Chapel and Mission Center in Malabon City. I think the two parcels that left over the weekend for Navotas will also be coordinated by Sr Ma Rosalina Luzon. I am just very lucky that I can find volunteers who can do distributions on my behalf and can really see that the dresses end up with the children in need. Makes my work very worthwhile although not easy as other people would think. 
Here is the parcel -
and here are the contents of the parcel -
made possible by the following donors -
1) Ladies of Kapunda Sewing Group with some of the dresses sponsored by Joyce Uray, Sheryl Shanahan, Alecia, Gemma & Lilly, June Branford, Barbara White, Gwenda, Heather, Bev Wenice, Paisley Parish
2) Gaylene Herrmann
3) Prudence Mann
4) Lesleigh Mitcham
5) Sarah Tanmahapran
6) Sue-Ellen Cox
7) Wendy Yates
8) Canungra Circle of Friends
9) Maureen O'Brien (Pairs of shorts)
10) Nicole Devet (Pairs of shorts)
11) Monika Osvald
12) Katherine Nott
13) Linda Smyth
14) Sharyn Paull
15) Betty Barrett for the mini bags

No undies were included in this parcel, all dress donors identified but donors of 12 pairs of shorts cannot be identified. If these pairs happen to be yours , let me know.

To see larger images of the contents of this parcel, please click here. For more details on this distribution (and also at a later stage when feedback is received) please click here or click on the special 'Dress Distribution' tab which you can find at the top of this page.

Thank you so much to all the donors who made this parcel possible. Thank you for the materials, time, money and effort you all spent in making these dresses being given to the less fortunate children in Bulacan . Your kindness and generosity is very much appreciated. Thank you.


I also would like to extend my heartfelt thank you to Norie Bordador for organizing and coordinating all these distributions, making sure that they get to the children in need. Thank you Norie. Your efforts are very much appreciated.

If you feel the need to enquire about this distribution, please feel free to send an email to dressagirlaustralia@gmail.com. Thank you.

My Winter Appeal sets

Last Saturday morning from the postoffice I decided to go to K-mart and check out prices for the winter appeal program. The items that I bought were still a bit pricey because I think it is still a bit early to be buying these type of clothing especially when it is still about 34 degrees outside in some locations.

Anyway, I bought myself 2 sets for the winter appeal program. One for a boy and one for a girl both size 6. I  found a ready-made set more expensive so decided to go for a mix and match.
Just to give everyone an idea as to how much it probably will cost you to buy a set here is what I spent. Other shops maybe  cheaper so I would suggest shopping around before buying anything if you are intending to donate.
           For the girl size 6 I paid $5.00 for the close neck shirt and $6.00 for the leggings.
           For the boy size 6 I paid $5.00 for the close neck shirt and $8.00 for the pants
I think i can find the pants cheaper in other shops but it was good quality and did not really want to drive to another mall to save a dollar because then my petrol would be more expensive. :-) And because I only needed one singlet and one pair of socks each and looking at prices buying a pack of 3 was cheaper than buying just one piece, I bought a pack of 3 for the socks and the singlet at $5.00 each. So now I have an extra pair of socks and singlet which I can allocate to other contributions requiring a sock or a singlet. I did not have to buy a beanie. I got the allocation from the beanies Gaylene Herrmann sent to me last week. 

All in all I spent $14.30 for the girl winter set and $16.30 for the boy winter set. For some of you who wants to help in the winter appeal, if you shop around I think you will be able to get it at a cheaper price. Maybe next week it will be a dollar or 2 cheaper. It is just me who does not want to do it. I will just skip my dessert a day next week to make up for it or buy sushi rolls instead of a lasagne for lunch. LOL!

So now I have the following available for allocation to other sets -
1 singlet
1 pair of socks
5 beanies 
I have not look at the submissions yet but whoever needs any of the above, please let me know.

Habit Factor Challenge Update

This is for a friend of mine who is watching me doing this challenge. After 3 weeks, this is where I stand and a week more (ends on the 2nd of February) to submit my data to check my progress and see if I win a prize in the competition. 
Trying to develop a habit of saving a gold coin a day I now have $42.00 in my moneybox after 21 days. Dont look that much but I counted it last night and it does equal 21 days@2.00 a day. Sometimes I do not have a gold coin so I dropped 2 dollar coins. Will be a big help this weekend when I send a parcel. :-)
I have learned 20 Japanese verbs in the last 21 days although they are a bit confusing and I really have to use or more of "hear it often" so I can remember them. I listen to the verbs when am on the train on my way to work and really helps. The nice thing about the Japanese language is you use the same verb regardless of whether you are referring to yourself (I) or another person (He or She) or a group(them) unlike Spanish where you use different pronouns otherwise they will not understand what you are saying.

Been 100% on the above habits but not on the third habit of walking 10,000 steps a day. Am not using the weather as an excuse (although I probably am crazy if I start walking at 30 degrees, dont think am that desperate) but due to work sometimes I feel lazy to go out at lunchtime. I think I missed 6 out of 21 but I already lost a kilo. Am not like other people where after a couple of days exercise, their weight immediately drops. But this is what I need to prepare myself for my Lima trip. :-)

Since I have been doing this for 3 weeks now, my day does not seem to be complete if I cannot accomplish at least 2 of them. The challenge is ending on Monday and not really sure what my chances are of winning although I would love to win. But win or lose, as far as developing habits to reach my goals I think I already won. Winning a prize is just a bonus (and would help my postage fund of course. LOL!)

Lost and finally found t-shirts

This is a good sign that I am almost done in my tasks (with only 4 days left in January) and looking forward to a good 2 months rest and possibly spend time crafting and/or sewing dresses . Why do I say am almost done? Well, a few days before Christmas when I was on the final stages of packing the Christmas Bags, I got short of 2 t-shirts. I needed 50 and I only had 48. Instead of buying just 2 I went to purchase 10 just in case I miscounted. I knew I packed the 2 but I could not find the other 8. Finally I gave up thinking that I must have included it in one of the parcels. Guess what, yesterday I found the 8 t-shirts when I was finalizing my packing for Kenya and Malabon Phils. It was squeezed in between the dresses, hidden so well (probably gasping for breath under the piles of dresses) and the only way you can find it is if all dresses are gone.

So finally, am able to post the picture of the 10-tshirts which I took before I packed 2 of them for the Christmas bags.
Whew! What a relief that I found the pack although if they were inadvertently included in the Christmas bags, it would still be ok because then I would have provided t-shirts to 58 boys instead of just 50. At least I know now that I didnt make the mistake of throwing it away in the bin. :-)

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Dress Distribution #51 - Children of Miwani Kenya (c/o Pastor Joshua Atieno) Parcel 1A

This is Dress Distribution #51 and the first parcel of two for the children of Miwani Kenya. This parcel of 62 dresses, bibs and undies will be sent to Pastor Joshua Atieno who is the head of the Widows of Africa Ministry in Kenya. Pastor Joshua sometimes travel to Rwanda to visit his ministry so a few of these dresses might end up for the children in Rwanda.
Here is the parcel which will be sent next weekend to get there in time for Easter-
and here are the contents of the parcel -
made possible by the following donors -
1) Heidi McKellar and the 1st Bardon Brownies
2) Monika Osvald
3) Lyn Granger
4) Sarah Tanmahapran
5) Pam of Threading my way
6) Ladies of Kapunda Sewing group
7) Sarah Vaughan
8) Pat Pynn
9) Linda Smyth
10) Beryl Hourigan, Marilyn Jenkins, Marie Dale, Kate Hardy and Terrie Ross
11) Christie Sturre
12) Wendy Yates
13) Katherine Nott
14) Sue Ellen Cox
15) Helen Fletcher
16) Deborah Parish
16) Anonymous Donor

Undies were included in this parcel donated by the Ladies of Kapunda Sewing Group and 2 out of 62 dresses  cannot be identified. If these dresses happen to be yours , let me know.

To see larger images of the contents of this parcel, please click here. For more details on this distributions (and also at a later stage when feedback is received) please click here or click on the special 'Dress Distribution' tab which you can find at the top of this page.

Thank you so much to all the donors who made this parcel possible. Thank you for sharing your money for the materials, time and effort in making these dresses for the less fortunate children in Miwani Kenya . Your kindness and generosity is very much appreciated. Thank you.

If you feel the need to enquire about this distribution, please feel free to send an email to dressagirlaustralia@gmail.com. Thank you.

Donation Acknowledgement FY14/1 #2 - 26 dresses from the Bardon Brownies

This is Donation Acknowledgement #2 - the second exception. A parcel of 26 dresses made by the Bardon Brownies under the guidance of Heidi McKellar. Not sure why I miss this as I am always excited when donations are made by kids, kids helping their less fortunate counterparts. When I did a review today of all the forms I received the past 2 weeks (normally I do not review forms but I did one today for some reason) I found one submission from Heidi McKellar. On the form she wrote that she was sending 26 dresses made by the 1st Bardon Brownies. Girls aged 7-10 years old and further said "Thank you for doing what you are doing and giving everyone the inspiration to help others!". I remembered one of the parcels I picked up last week was from her so I immediately located the parcel, opened it and this is what I found inside the parcel. The Bardon Brownies with the dresses they made. Amazing! 
and these are the 26 dresses they made and some of them have not even done sewing before -
Awesome kids for an awesome world! Kids joining Dress A Girl Australia in shaking for a better world in 2014. It is such a nice feeling when you see your hard work triggering others to do the same to make this world a better place. 

Thank you so much to all the 1st Bardon Brownies and to Heidi McKellar for organizing and guiding these little kids to appreciate what they have and share with their less fortunate counterparts. It is so much appreciated. Thank you.

In appreciation for what these brownies did, I am including these 26 dresses in my parcel to Kenya for the little Kenyans to own which I am sending next weekend. Thank you so much.

Donation Acknowledgement FY14/1 #1 - Beanies from Gaylene

I am making a couple of exceptions on donation acknowledgements (official start is still in April) because I need the items that have been donated. Donation #1 is from Gaylene Herrmann which is a pack of 7 beanies. These beanies I will be allocating to the Winter Appeal for South Africa where winter sets donated needs a beanie.
Here are the 7 beanies from Gaylene -
Two of these have already been allocated to the two winter sets I have donated (one green and one blue). I do not know how to knit so I definitely cannot make a beanie. LOL! There are five more left to be allocated.

To Gaylene, thank you so much for the beanies. So handy in the winter appeal program. Much, much appreciated.

Saturday, 25 January 2014

Feedback on Distribution by the RVM sisters of CDO Philippines

As I have written earlier that two of the parcels I sent last December to CDO Philippines which had 63 dresses, 20 pairs of shorts, books and school supplies were donated to Lourdes University who has about three adopted communities in the region. I was looking at an attachment sent to me by my friend Ana who made the actual delivery of the parcels to the RVM sisters when I noticed a dress worn by one of the kids. It was so small because it was in a collage format but I thought the dress was familiar. So I sent her another message asking if she could send a bigger image and indeed she had pictures but is so busy she can not find the time to send and has to send it in batches as she cannot send in bulk. She is a teacher so her hands are full but she sent me two last night and this is one of them. 
The distribution was done in Balulang Elementary School, a school adopted by the nuns of Lourdes College to help kids in the community get an education and the few dresses you see in this picture came from the 63 dresses that I donated to the school last Dec and where am still having a headache trying to reconstruct the donors. Look at how behave these kids are, sitting down waiting for further instructions. :-)

When I receive more pictures I will post them here. By the way, the child in the middle is wearing a dress donated by Gaylene Herrmann, the dress I recognized in the very small picture pasted in the attachment which was in collage format.

What's Up this week - Dress A Girl Australia

In my 2014 calendar of events where I listed important dates to follow regarding Dress A Girl Australia's activities for the year, I also mentioned that this is going to be my travel year. One of my trips which is going to be in the middle of this year is our trip to Lima Peru. A few more parcels to pack, some to be sent in the next few weeks as allocated (and the rest of the parcels until I get to raise enough postage money again) I am excited I can go back to sewing again.  I intend to sew at least 75 dresses between now and June to handcarry with me when I go to Lima Peru in July.

Lots of thanks to Suzanne Schenk Lofgren and Rachel Eggum Cinader of Hope-4-Women International for helping in finding a contact for me in Peru. I do not believe I will be able to make the actual distribution of dresses but at least there is someone who can probably do it on my behalf. More details on this as the event draws nearer. 

Here is a snapshot of a few Little Peruvians that I hope will be one of the few recipients of the dresses in a few months time.
I will only be handcarrying dresses made by me and possibly by my sisters from the fabric materials donated to me by a few ladies last year which I never had the chance to make into dresses due to a tight schedule. I hope to reach my goal of 75. Whatever the number I am able to sew I will handcarry them.

Feedback on Unaccompanied Baggage Trial

The parcels have arrived in Johannesburg last week (21st of Jan). Here is a snapshot of Joan Adams email
I think R235.00 is equivalent to AUD$25.00 which is much lower than what I expected and what I was told here in Sydney. She must have been given a discount too. So happy!!!

Friday, 24 January 2014

Information on the Winter Appeal for South Africa

This year is going to be an awesome year and the first drive that will contribute to a 2014 awesome year is the winter appeal for the children of South Africa . I wish I could raise more but due to parcel constraints, at this time I am only raising winter clothing for 40 children.  I may add more depending on weight and space availability so it is very important that the guidelines on what to contribute is followed. These requirements have been set up to comply or make sure that I meet the foundation’s requirements of their clothing sponsorship program.

What is required from donors - For every child, there should be
(1) one closed-neck long-sleeved cotton t-shirt
(2) one winter singlet
(3) one cotton pants or fleece pants
(4) one pair of winter socks
(5) one beanie 

I am setting a limit of one donor-one child to give chance to others who may want to contribute. If you cannot provide the whole set, please identify what you can donate by ticking the box in the form of the item that you can contribute . Any missing item will be sourced from other donors. (i.e. Beanies, I currently have 10 beanies on hand). 

The clothing materials need to be brand new. Used clothing will not be included in any of the parcels. The foundation has a ‘hand-me-down’ policy for the clothes. If a kid who is 5 years old outgrows his allocation, if the clothing items are still wearable it is handed down to another 5 year old who needs a new allocation and the previous owner gets allocated a new set based on his new size. So it is very important that the items are durable and new so it would last longer.

The winter parcel needs to leave Australia by mid-of May so I am looking at early or mid-March to have all contributions already on its way to Sydney. Confirmation of parcel due date will be advised once I have the numbers of contributions confirmed.

Here is the link to the form where you can provide your details and intention to help keep at least 40 children in South Africa warm this winter -

Thank you all for your kindness and generosity!

If anyone has a question(s), please feel free to send an email to dressagirlaustralia@gmail.com.

Dress Distribution #53 - Children of Navotas Manila (c/o Norie Bordador)

This is unscheduled distribution parcel #2 of 3 which I mentioned earlier for the children of the Philippines in particular the children from Navotas Metro Manila. Parcels sent to Norie Bordador who will be organizing and coordinating distribution with a group of missionaries and volunteers in the community. Once I have received the details of where the actual distribution has been done (i.e. location, school etc) I will give an update.  Just wanted to post the details of donors in advance to tick off the task from my to-do list. Am glad I got the chance to do 3 more unscheduled distributions as I get to clear mostly small dress sizes.
Here are the two parcels of 161 dresses -
and here are the contents of the two parcels made possible by the donors following the images. Again, I have splitted them into two batches to make it easier for me to identify the donors.
Parcel 1 contents -
made possible by the following donors -
1) Canungra Circle of Friends Qld
2) Linda Smyth
3) Gaylene Herrmann
4) Jane Kelly, Marieka Ashmore and Liz Skinner of Coffs Harbour
5) Sharyn Paull
6) Betty Barrett & Betty Paull
7) Laurel Murphy
8) Leonie Harrison
9) heyboom
10) Flor dela Cruz
11) Louise Wright
12) Sash Hinton
13) Kaylee Healy
14) Debbie Nikolic and friend Wanda and sewn by Heather Harris
15) Beryl Hourigan, Marilyn Jenkins, Marie Dale, Kate Hardy and Terrie Ross
16) Pat Pynn
17) Sarah Vaughan
18) Melissa Delaware
19) Anonymous Donor
20) Dress A Girl Australia

Parcel 2 contents -
made possible by the following donors -
1) The Sewing Library facebook group
2) Nicole Devet
3) Karen Interlandi
4) Linda Smyth
5) Flor dela Cruz
6) Mila Elloso
7) Sandra Lew
8) Heather Harris
9) Bethany Greenaway
10) Sarah Tanmahapran
11) Di Menzel
12) Ladies of Kapunda Sewing Group
13) Beryl Hourigan, Marilyn Jenkins, Marie Dale, Kate Hardy and Terrie Ross 
14) Pam of Threading My Way
15) Evelyn Smart, Colleen Barry, Veronica Tooey
16) Dress A Girl Australia

No undies on these distributions and donor(s) of 2 of the dresses out of 161 cannot be identified. If these dressses happen to be yours, let me know.

To see larger images of the contents of the two parcels, please click here. For more details on these distributions (and also at a later stage when feedback is received) please click here or click on the special 'Dress Distribution' tab which you can find at the top of this page.

Thank you so much to all the donors who made these two parcels possible. Thank you for sharing your money for the materials, time and effort in making these dresses for the less fortunate children in the Navotas area of the Philippines. Your kindness and generosity is very much appreciated. Thank you.

If you feel the need to enquire about this distribution, please feel free to send an email to dressagirlaustralia@gmail.com. Thank you.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

9 Boxes of Unidentified Donors

These are the parcels all nine of them that is giving me a headache these days as I cannot find the paper where I wrote the names of donors whose dresses were inside these parcels. I packed these parcels in record 3 nights up to 2am and woke up very early the following morning to bring these boxes to my sister's house where it was going to be picked up since I had to go to work just so I could send it in time for Christmas. These 9 boxes were sent to CDO Philippines last December. Seven of them were for the Christmas bags and two were given as gifts to a school I went to in my elementary days to distribute to the children of the community they have adopted. On these boxes were 213 dresses, 70 pairs of shorts, 50 t-shirts, christmas bags, toys, undies and bras, headscarves, hairties, books and school supplies.
The seven parcels containing the Christmas bags of 150 dresses, 50 pairs of shorts, 50 t-shirts, undies, toys, headscarves and hairties have definitely been distributed from the couple of pictures I have posted. I do have more pictures still to be posted when I get the chance as I still am very busy sorting and packing. The 7 parcels were received by my Aunt Emma and my niece Sharon who did the distributions. Sharon is a doctor who used to work for the Philippine Red Cross and is now back to field work as a doctor and is visiting hinterland areas, remote areas as a doctor and where only doctors dare to go. I will be sending her more dresses before Easter to distribute to the children in the remote areas while treating them, children who probably have not seen the city, never owned a new dress nor owned a toy. She looks forward to the parcels I will be sending her and is excited to make the distribution.

The other two parcels were received by the president of Lourdes College (now a university) Sister Maria Nora R Joson , RVM* and Ms Myrna Fantonalgo the Vice President, Administration of the university. The boxes were delivered to them by my good friend Ana dela Fuente who is also a member of the Zonta Ladies International CDO Chapter. The feedback I got was that they were very happy and thrilled to receive the boxes of 63 dresses, 20 pairs of shorts, bras and undies, books and school supplies as they have never received gifts of this kind before. I am waiting for the pictures that they have taken plus the certificate of appreciation for the donation. The items were to be distributed to two very depressed communities in the area that they have adopted so the children in the communities can go to school. I hope I would be able to raise more books and school supplies to send to them sometime this year.

Now back to the donors, I will try to reconstruct the contents of these nine parcels (rest be assured that I have sent these packages and in fact I paid $336.00 for these parcels to get to them in December. Link to the docket you will find in the Dress distribution page). I dont like mentioning how much postage was paid but with the number of emails I have been getting asking if dresses have been distributed I have no choice. I wish people are a bit more understanding and show some compassion instead of asking if their dresses have been distributed.

Am sure I will be able to reconstruct but will take time. So donors who are still wondering and sending me emails asking if their dresses have already been distributed, your dresses could be in one of these nine parcels (except dresses I received between the October to December timeframe). The donors names will be posted as soon as I have completed the reconstruction.


*RVM stands for Religious of the Virgin Mary

Important Info on Dress Materials to use

It is time to remind everyone again that when making dresses to donate to Dress A Girl Australia to please make sure that you use cotton materials or fabrics that are sturdy enough to withstand washing in rivers, using stones to wash away dirt etc. Materials should not be flimsy or so thin that you can actually see your hand behind the material. 

Effective immediately, any dresses donated that do not meet these simple guidelines will not be included in any distributions and the donor will be contacted if contact details are available so please make sure that your contact details are also included in your parcels. Thank you.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

2014 Calendar for Dress A Girl Australia

In order to improve and become more effective on this campaign and taking into consideration work and family and avoid inconveniences and burn-outs, I have decided to come up with a 2014 calendar for Dress A Girl (Around the World) Australia and share with everyone.  Any changes to the calendar schedule below will be entirely within my discretion. Also, this year is my travel year so I thought I should also share with you the dates that most likely I will be out of the country and possibly not contactable at all for Dress A Girl Australia activities.

2014 Calendar

Jan 2014 - Clearing up 2013 dresses
Feb 1 - Apr 6 - No scheduled activities for Dress A Girl Australia. Emails and enquiries will be responded to whenever required.
Apr 7 - Dress A Girl Australia open for 2014 events and activities
Apr 7 - Apr 16 - Start of 2014 Donation acknowledgements
Apr 17 - Apr 30 - No scheduled activities for Dress A Girl Australia (Will be out of the country. Emails will be responded to if needed based on connection availability)
May 1 - Jul 6 - Resume activities for Dress A Girl Australia
July 7 - 27 - No scheduled activities for Dress A Girl Australia (Will be out of the country and possibility of getting internet connectivity is very slim)
July 28 - Sept 14 - Resume activities for Dress A Girl Australia
Sep 15 - Sept 21 - No scheduled activities for Dress A Girl Australia (will be out of the country. Emails will be responded to if needed based on connection availability)
Sep 22 - Dec 21 - Resume activities for Dress A Girl Australia
Dec 22 - 26 - Christmas Break 
Dec 27 - Dec 30 - catch up on activities for Dress A Girl Australia
Dec 31 - Jan 4 - New Year's Break

Dress A Girl Australia activities could include planning, donation acknowledgements, sorting, packing, organizing, coordinating, parcel follow-ups, sending of parcels, charity drives, making handmades and selling at markets to raise funds for postage and of course do my own sewing of dresses.

Please note that my full-time job from Mon to Fri (8-5pm) is still a priority and that I have committed the number of hours below to this campaign to keep it going. Any extra hours I spend in addition to the committed hours below will be based entirely within my discretion :

   Weekdays after work hours - 2 to 3 hours
   Weekends between 5 to 6 hours.

Parcel pickups will be scheduled on Saturday mornings except on Saturdays that I am away or not available due to market schedules. And all pickups will be done from my postbox number in Casula. No special pickups from other locations. Drop-offs will be allowed but has to be pre-arranged and does not require my presence during drop-off.

Please be guided with this information to avoid inconveniences. Thank you.

Monday, 20 January 2014

2014 activities start in April

In response to an email I received, there is no deadline to meet on the submission of dresses. There is even no need to hurry to send your dresses to me especially that I am not doing any distributions until April. When I say April distribution it does not mean that all dresses will be sent in April. It will only be in April that I will start to think where to send the dresses, which dresses to include etc. As I have said it takes a lot of time to prepare and organize for these dresses to be distributed and for 2014 I will only start the process in April. Thank you.

Sunday, 19 January 2014

Feedback from Mercy & Grace Charity India on Dresses sent #2

I received these pictures yesterday from Mercy & Grace Charity of Mrs Nirmala Kumari upon receipt of the parcel I sent. She will be distributing the dresses to the children in the orphanage and schools in remote rural areas. 
I cannot wait to send the second parcel I have already packed for her.

Dress A Girl Australia Well for clean water update and others

I am now below $10,000 on the Dress A Girl Australia fundraising campaign for a clean water for the people of Kalagi Uganda. I have raised $609 so far. It is still a very,very,very long way to reaching the goal but it is moving through the help of friends and I hope to spend more time on this project for the next two months. Thank you to those who have donated so far. I really appreciate it.

Except for the parcels that I am sending in the next two weeks, I am still sticking to my plan of no new distributions until I start 2014 activities in April. I am still sticking to the plan I had last year where no dresses received in October to December will be distributed until I restart in April unless sizes are needed. This is in reply to a few emails I have received asking how come their dresses have not been distributed yet. Please note that it is not just a matter of sending off the dresses once I receive your donations. It takes a lot of time, effort, money, sizing, weighing of parcels, coordination, communication and organization between myself and the recipients before the parcels are actually sent and I really hope some donors do understand this. 

I am still sticking to my plan of having a rest from Dress A Girl Australia activities between now and April. I still have my left arm to take care of which got hurt in one of the parcels sent to me last year weighing more than 5 kilos. And I am still sticking to what I have said earlier that parcels should be packed in kilos of 5 or less. I have not been getting a good feedback (a few unwanted emails received) since I imposed this maximum limit of kilos on parcels. I just want everyone to know that I love what I am doing and the only way I can keep on doing this is if I am fit and dont get hurt so I need to look after myself as well. Even if it is my choice to do all of this for free, I also have the choice of not getting hurt while doing what I like to do and so I try to find ways of avoiding injuries or inconveniences to happen. I try to find ways on how to improve this campaign. If anyone is unhappy with what I am doing, then what can I do.

Donation acknowledgements will resume when I resume 2014 Dress A Girl Australia activities in April.

Thank you.

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Yarn Bombing

I went to Melbourne this morning so I could watch the matinee show of the King Kong musical which is ending in 2 weeks time. While waiting for the start of the musical I decided to walk around Federation Square and wondered why the tree trunks seemed to be very colourful. I went to where the trees were and that is when I saw yarn bombing. I have read about this being done in several parts of the USA and one or two in Australia but I have never really seen it happening or seen what it looks like until today.

Yarn bombing is a type of graffiti or street art that employs colourful displays of knitted or crocheted yarn or fibre rather than paint or chalk. Here are some pictures of the Yarn bombing at Federation Square at Cnr Flinders Street & Swanston Street, Melbourne. 
I love it. Maybe I should do one in my frontyard. At least I would not need council approval as it is inside my block of land. :-) Maybe...start with prayer flags? This would be a great thing to do. By the way, the King Kong musical was absolutely awesome. Mind-blowing production. The one-day trip was very worth it.

Dress Distribution #50 - Children of India c/o Garden of Life Parcel 2

This is another parcel of 65 dresses for the children of India c/o The Garden of Life. Again, this parcel will be put on hold until such time that the Kenya parcels have been sent. There are 65 dresses in the parcel but for some reason I only find 63 in the album. I can no longer identify the 2 missing pictures as the box is sealed.
Here is the parcel -
here are the contents of the parcel -
made possible by the following donors : 
1) Ladies of Kapunda Sewing Group
2) Sarah Tanmahapran
3) Cassie Ashley for Rachel Platt
4) Katherine Nott
5) Maureen O'Brien
6) Linda Smyth
7) Sarah Vaughan
8) Narelle Cox
9) T-shirts for the skirts provided by Dress A Girl Australia

No undies on this distribution and donor of 3 dresses cannot be identified. Am pretty sure there is only one donor to these 3 as the fabric material used is the same. If you happen to be the owner of the 3 unidentified dresses, let me know.

To see larger images of the contents of this parcel, please click here. For more details on these distributions (and also at a later stage when feedback is received) please click here or click on the special 'Dress Distribution' tab which you can find at the top of this page.

Thank you so much to all the donors who made this parcel possible. Thank you for the time, money, materials and effort in making these dresses for the less fortunate children of India. Your kindness and generosity is very much appreciated. Thank you.

If you feel the need to enquire about this distribution, please feel free to send an email to dressagirlaustralia@gmail.com. Thank you.

Friday, 17 January 2014

Feedback from Mercy & Grace Charity India on Dresses sent

Feedback from Mercy & Grace Charity India. Dresses have been received. A little patience and you might see some of your dresses worn by the kids next week. Thank you.
For a larger or readable version of this email, please click here.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Unaccompanied Baggage Trial

I am currently on trial sending an unaccompanied baggage to Johannesburg South Africa. I have encountered a small hiccup in that I keep on missing(two weeks in a row)  the time that I need to go to the airport to endorse the baggage that I want to send. I cannot let anyone else bring the baggage as I need to sign some forms and that it should be the sender who endorses the baggage. The only time I can do it is on weekends. I will not be able to do it this Saturday as I am going away for a day so I will be attempting again on Sunday and hopefully it will be a success this time. The arrangement is for the recipient of the unaccompanied baggage to come and pick it up from the airport when it arrives. If this trial turns out to be a success and that there are no hassles to sending unaccompanied baggages to South Africa, that would really be my lucky day. A successful delivery will allow me to send another baggage to Durban South Africa. So am keeping my fingers crossed on this one.

Dress Distribution #49 - Children of India c/o Mercy & Grace Parcel 2

I packed this parcel as an extra distribution to India but have decided I will not be sending it until February or early March to give way to parcels to Kenya which I need to send at the end of this month. This particular parcel of 50 dresses and undies are meant for 50 more children under the care of Mercy & Grace Orphanage in India.

Here is the parcel -
and here are the contents of the parcel -
made possible by the following donors. Please note that dresses to India requires sleeves.
1) Linda Smyth
2) Ladies of Kapunda Sewing Group
3) Katherine Nott
4) Betty Barrett and Betty Paull
5) Wendy Yates
6) heyboom for the t-shirts used in the t-shirt dresses
7) T-shirt dresses sewn by Dress A Girl Australia from fabrics donated by Linda Smyth, Monika Osvald, Louise Wright, Sash Hinton, Jennifer Howlett and Erlyn Ballesta
8) Undies by the Ladies of Kapunda Sewing Group
8) Dress A Girl Australia

Most of these t-shirt dresses were sewn by me in early 2013 when I was doing the one-dress-a-day for 365 days journey. To see larger images of the contents of this parcel, please click here. For more details on these distributions (and also at a later stage when feedback is received) please click here or click on the special 'Dress Distribution' tab which you can find at the top of this page.

Thank you so much to all the donors who made this parcel possible. Thank you for heartily sharing your time, money, materials and effort in making these dresses for the less fortunate children of India. Your kindness and generosity is very much appreciated. Thank you.

If you feel the need to enquire about this distribution, please feel free to send an email to dressagirlaustralia@gmail.com. Thank you.

Parcels for Kenya

Aside from the Philippines' parcels, I will be sending two more parcels to Kenya this month. Pastor Joshua of the Widows of Africa in Kenya has more or less agreed that when he visits his ministry in Rwanda, he will take with him dresses for the kids in the community. So I will be sending two boxes. One for Kenya and the other if he wants to for the children of Rwanda. These parcels have to leave Australia by the end of this month so it arrives in Kenya in time for Easter. Thank you Pastor Joshua.


And I am glad I joined the Habit factor challenge. As of today I have saved $22.00 from my habit of gold coin a day. By the end of 4 weeks, I would have enough to send one parcel to Kenya including the money I received from selling an item in ebay which reminds me that I have more items to sell that I no longer need. Maybe this weekend I will list all of them.

Important Information on parcels

Good morning everyone. Last year i hurt my left arm due to a parcel weighing more than 5 kilos. Even the guy at the counter of the post office said to me that it was very heavy. He helped me but he could not take out the parcel from the trolley anymore. My arm still hurts a bit everytime i lift something. This is not my main job guys i have a real job to earn a living and i dont want to get hurt or be in pain because of this. 

So i am going to make a change as far as sending parcels is concerned. There should be no parcels sent that is weighing more than 5 kilos each. You can send as many dresses as you want. That is not a problem but please make sure that they are packed in kilos of 5 each. This is a must to avoid injuries. Remember i dont only picked up parcels i also send. 

People who are offering to help pick up parcels they are older than me so i cannot expect them to lift something that i myself cannot do so please be considerate. If the postoffice guy tells me that he thinks it is too heavy for me to lift then i will not pick up the parcel until such time i can find someone to pick it up. I worked for a company where safety is the number one priority and practically brainwashed by it so i will also apply this concept to this volunteer/work campaign to avoid accidents and inconveniences.

So again, please be considerate and be guided with this information. Thank you.

Dress Distribution #52 - Children of Bohol Phils (c/o Norie Bordador)

This is one of the unscheduled distributions that I am happy to oblige as I still have dresses on hand which I want to give before I start the new year 2014. All these unscheduled distributions will be focused in the Philippines which is very okay with me because it is nearer and taking cost into consideration, it is not that expensive even if I have to send boxes and boxes of dresses which literally I am going to do. These particular parcels are going to the children of Bohol in the Philippines. Bohol is located in the central visayas region. It was recently strucked with a deadly earthquake. It happened in October of last year where 222 people died, 8 missing and over 900 injured. Thousands of structures were damaged and about 14,000 were totally destroyed. A month after the earthquake happened although the place was not directly hit by Typhoon Haiyan, a lot of those who were still living in temporary shelters had to be evacuated again.

Anyway, after coordinating with a parish, a group of volunteers headed by Norie Bordador will be flying over to Bohol from Manila . Am not sure but I think the flying time will be about an hour. They will be doing their distribution in Cambigsi Elementary School with the aid of the school in charge Ms Hilot and their school principal Dr Diodora Gabito once these parcels are received. 157 dresses for 157 children in this community. Am just so lucky that I can easily find people willing to do distributions on my behalf and they even have to fly sometimes. Thank you guys. Your efforts to help make a difference are really appreciated.

So without much ado, here are the boxes containing the 157 dresses that I will be sending over on Sunday (I hope otherwise it will have to be next weekend) -
and here are the contents of these 2 boxes - again splitted into two batches to make it easier for me to identify the donors -
Parcel 1 contents -
made possible by the following donors -
1) Shirley Bell
2) Ladies of Kapunda Sewing group
3) Betty Barrett & Betty Paull
4) Karen Interlandi
5) Bethany Greenaway
6) Deborah Parish
7) Monika Osvald
8) Canungra Circle of Friends Qld
9) Linda Smyth
10) Katherine Nott with fabrics donated by Amanda Sampson and the Fabric Bug
11) Gaylene Hermann
12) Annette Norley
13) Pam of Threading My Way
14) Wendy Yates

Parcel 2 contents -
made possible by the following donors -
1) Ladies of Kapunda Sewing Group
2) Di Menzel
3) Sarah Tanmahapran
4) Evelyn Smart, Colleen Barry, Veronica Tooey 
5) Siobhan Leyne and Anna Dacre
6) Katherine Nott
7) Monika Osvald
8) Anne Goedeck
9) Betty Barrett and Betty Paull
10) Bronwyn Reynolds
11) Toni Kirkpatrick
12) Golden girls Kay, Pauline, Betty & Julie

Again, no undies on these distributions and 5 of the dresses out of 157 I can no longer identify. If these dressses happen to be yours, let me know.

To see larger images of the contents of the two parcels, please click here. For more details on these distributions (and also at a later stage when feedback is received) please click here or click on the special 'Dress Distribution' tab which you can find at the top of this page.

Thank you so much to all the donors who made these two parcels possible. Thank you for heartily sharing your time, money, materials and effort in making these dresses for the less fortunate children in the Bohol area of the Philippines. Your kindness and generosity is very much appreciated. Thank you.

If you feel the need to enquire about this distribution, please feel free to send an email to dressagirlaustralia@gmail.com. Thank you.