Today, we want you to meet Dim! Dim was born in Burma and was granted refugee status and brought to Chicago. She started taking sewing classes at Re:new in 2018 and is now our newest Artisan!
We love introducing you to our Re:new family. Today, we want you to meet Dim, a wife and mom to 3 children, ages 15, 12, and 10. Dim was born in Burma (now Myanmar). Unfortunately, the conflict and violence happening in Myanmar today are not new to Dim's home country. In 2000, she and her husband left Burma for Malaysia. "There was a lot of violence in Burma. I was very sad to leave," she shared with us.
Five years ago, the UN granted her family refugee status and brought them to Chicago.
While she'll tell you that her children like living in Illinois and keep her very busy, she still "misses her friends a lot. Sometimes I can still talk to them, but it has been hard for the last few months."
In 2018, a friend told Dim about Re:new's sewing classes, and she came to her first class with us. Dim had learned to sew while in Malaysia. She told us it took her two years to learn from her friends, but they would sew clothes for each other and for their children. We were happy to welcome her to our sewing class at Re:new!
Sewing and ESL classes at Re:new are offered on Tuesdays and Fridays and are available for all refugee women in the Chicagoland area. These free classes are a way for us to share the love of Jesus with those around us!
We offer two tracks for incoming students:
- Community Track: this track is for students not interested in being employed but still interested in learning new skills.
- Employment Sewing Track: this track is for refugees interested in working for Re:new after completing all sewing training requirements.
When Dim joined our classes, she jumped right back into continuing to develop her sewing skills. Attending weekly classes, Dim was also able to make new friends and learn new fashion tips. And now, Dim is an Artisan on our team!
"I like my new friends! And my new ideas for fashion! I feel more creative here."
Our Executive Director Kristi Zboncak, knew Dim was in the right spot. "From the moment I met Dim during sewing class, I could feel her joy radiating. She came in with determination to learn and take ownership of the products she made,” says Kristi. “Her first official day as an Artisan was so fun! She sat with us during lunchtime, jumped right into conversation, and made everyone laugh. We are so excited the Lord brought her here for this season of her life, and we look forward to seeing her achieve her dreams!"
Dim says her future dream is to be a fashion designer! And she still sews for her teenage daughters today, so we'd say she's well on her way to making that dream a reality. What a privilege that Re:new could be a part of making dreams come true!