Their four rules are simple: wear your apron, take a photo, give a little and pass it on. These are the rules of newly formed fundraising group Aprons4Action and by following these four simple steps, you too can help take action against poverty in Erampatti, in Southern India.
Aprons4Action is a non profit organisation that isn’t trying to change the world, but simply hoping to make a difference in one small community, Shalom Community Development Projects.
Shalom Community Development Projects is a holistic care and community development project situated in Erampatti Village in Madurai, a district in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. The village has approximately 1000 families with limited water supply and no medical facilities.
A small sustainable farming community is being established on 5 acres of land on the outskirts of the village to provide a place where widows and orphans can live together and grow food. Dairy cows, chickens and ducks provide food and income and a well, bore and drip irrigation system have been installed to provide water for fruit trees and vegetable gardens. Orphaned and abandoned boys and girls and several widows live on the property and are given education, training and care.
The project also operates an afterschool tutoring program in the village, medical care program, distributes goats to poor families and provides employment and training opportunities for local villagers on the project’s farming and construction activities.
In October 2013 a bunch of kind-hearted Kenmore ladies, began sewing and collecting aprons with the goal of gathering 200 aprons to send out on individual journeys to raise funds and awareness for the project. They wanted to see how far their aprons could travel around the world, simply by being passed from friend to friend.
Their idea grew, with many friends, family and complete strangers getting involved. “We had people sewing aprons in Tasmania, Victoria, NSW and QLD, while others searched through every op-shop they came across looking for vintage ones. As time passed and word spread, our apron army grew and so did our number of aprons. We even had one apron sent to us by some one who heard about us online, all the way from the United States. Within 5 months we’d passed our goal of 200 aprons, giving us 200 aprons to send off on their journeys and plenty more to sell.”
The Aprons4Action website lists lots of ways to get involved, including a launch event on Saturday 10 May (10am – 12 noon) at Bundaleer Rainforest Gardens, Brookfield in Brisbane. Tickets are $35 and includes a glass of bubbles, a delcious morning tea and a chance to hear first hand the story of Shalom, and how Australian and Indian families are working together, to help women and children living in extreme poverty in Erampatti, a small village in South India.
Attendees will have the opportunity to take home one of ourAprons4Action exchange aprons to start on its journey or purchase a new apron or cut flowers just in time for Mothers Day – yes, Mothers Day in Australia is the next day!