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The next day I came back

Aamiina, Participant of Open Sewing Course

Recorded by Barbara Imobersteg for series "How I got to know Social Fabric"


I got into a conversation with a woman one day at the Binz train station. Like me, she was from Somalia, and we talked for a while.

Suddenly, she said, "I have to go, I am late." She had an appointment at Social Fabric and attended a sewing course there. That's what she told me as she hurried away.


"I'd like to sew, too," I thought as I watched her go.


Social Fabric - Community Sewing Atelier

She disappeared into a house on Eichstrasse, and I made a mental note of the entrance. The next day, I came back. I am used to acting independently, and I decided to pursue this matter. I still hardly knew German, but fortunately, there was a picture of the tailor's scissors hanging in the stairway. This is how I knew that the atelier could not be far away.


I went upstairs and was warmly welcomed. 

Elisabeth was a volunteer in the atelier and ensured me that I was in the right place. We could not communicate with words at that time. There was a man from Africa in the atelier, but he was not from Somali and spoke a different language. But then a Somali woman showed up, and she started translating. "May I also come here to sew," I asked.


Elisabeth explained to me which days the atelier was open.


From then on I was there every Thursday.

The volunteers showed me how the sewing machines worked. In Somali I knew a neighbour with a treadle machine. So often I had watched him and sometimes he let me sew a little with it. Now I was learning to use the beautiful, fast, new machines.


I am skilled and sew a lot - for my daughters Samira and Ifra and for me.

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