Bishop Montgomery High School

Every stitch counts

tumblr_inline_nktl1lifyM1t74xuiCould you imagine owning only one article of clothing? For almost your entire life that piece of cloth will shelter you, it will be the only thing to protect from the harsh weather, travel with everywhere, and be one of the only things worth cherishing. It is an unfathomable idea to think, in such a materialistic world, that only one or two pieces clothing will be all we own. For some people that is an actual reality. Our lives have choices: we wake up and wonder what to wear, what will match, what’s actually in fashion, or which shirt is clean. We also have choices about how we spend our lives—do we want to give to others and try to better the world, or separate ourselves from harsh realities? Girls fill their closets with dresses, not of all them understanding that girls, their same age, might not have a single clean dress, or simply own one.

In a quest to help fight poverty growing in countries, students at Bishop Montgomery High School got involved with the Dress A Girl Around the World organization. This group makes it their job to create dresses for girls in need of them, since they believe that every girl needs to own at least one dress. These beautiful pieces of art, however, do more than simply provide them with something to wear, but it also gives these girls protection from predators, because they’re now protected by an organization. Best of all, these dresses are hand delivered to the girls, so they know that they’re genuinely loved and cared for.

Dress A Girl Around the World was brought to BIshop Montgomery by one of our Spanish teachers, Mrs. Galdamez. Her sister, who passed away in June of last year, enjoyed volunteering her time and discovered this group, which called to her “life of service.” Some of her family members, including Mrs. Galdamez, who always supported her, began to make 100 dresses to give to the girls. She passed away right before they reached their 100 mark, so in honor of her sister, Mrs. Galdamez brought the dress-making process to Bishop, and Concordia, one of the most popular service clubs, started to help with a goal of 100 dresses to make.

Mrs. Fabbri, the club moderator, whole-heartedly has devoted much of her time to making these dresses, where she “puts lots of details into making and personalizing them.” To her it becomes an honor and she hopes that “a girl on the other end can see that someone cares about them and inspire them to do something beautiful with their life.” She and her group of girls after school have spent hours upon hours matching, cutting, sewing, and packaging these clothes. The dresses have not only made an impact on the members of the club themselves, but also to those outside the club: Jonas Bretana feels like “it’s the perfect embodiment of the school’s effort to act in charity around the world, and make it a more suitable place for others.” The popularity of the dress making process at the school brought the attention of the southern California representative, Janice Cooper, who paid the students and teachers a visit to thank them for their generosity.

Although everyone loves the mixing and matching of the fabric or the meditative sewing, the most unique part of the entire process is the beautiful blessing that goes out with the dresses and received by those young girls.

—Emily ishoplair

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