During spring break, many Southwestern Adventist University students will take part in short term mission work in both the Dominican Republic and the Navajo Nation in Arizona and New Mexico.
In Keene, a group of ladies from the Keene Seventh-day Adventist Church has made it their mission to support these trips beyond prayer or monetary donations.
Wanting the young girls in both the Navajo Nation and the Dominican Republic to feel special and loved, these volunteer seamstresses have sewn 180 beautiful dresses for these children.
“Being part of this project has made me want to look for more projects to be involved in, and it makes me feel good to be doing good for others,” SWAU student Peggy Jacobs said. “I want the young girls to feel loved and to know that no matter what hardships they go through, there are people, young and old, who care for them.”
The process of sewing a dress takes between three and four hours. Creating 180 unique dresses took the team of ladies a combined total of 600 hours not including the time they used to buy supplies, cut the pattern and prepare the fabric.
“We talked and laughed as we sewed away,” Jacobs said. “While the process was time consuming, it honestly flew by.”
This year marks the 21st year that SWAU has served in the Dominican Republic and the 16th year that the university has served in the Navajo Nation.
Over the years, the Navajo Mission Trip has received increased support and this year has been blessed with funding from the North American Division of Seventh-day Adventist Church Native Ministries Department, as well as the Oklahoma Conference Native Ministries Department.
With just days until the trip, final preparations are being made.