Sewing School Planning, Budget and Construction

         A major force contributing to the success of the program is the involvement of the parents, primarily the moms. There are over 100 moms living in Volcanes who do not work and probably never will. They take care of the kids and are the stabilizing element in the family. Many are single parents or women whose husbands spend many days away from the family searching for work. All of these families are poor. As a result, there is tremendous pressure on the students when they reach high school to drop out and help contribute to the family finances.     

         Work being done by the VCEP the of Volcanes neighborhood has been attracting a lot of attention locally and is inspiring others to do the same.  An International agency who sets up sewing schools to teach local mothers in poor areas around the world is considering setting up its next project here in Volcanes.  It would mean a huge investment of equipment to teach unemployed mothers how to sew on machines.  They've found that once a large enough group of qualified people are available, the mothers or local groups can set up small companies to offer sewing services to local hotels and businesses.  With thousands of school uniforms needed every year, this new income could totally change the lives of the citizens of Volcanes.  Many hurdles still remain but the city’s mayor is behind it and has re-furbished and offered an unused day care building to the group.  It could ultimately create a hundred new jobs for housewives right around the corner from their homes.

    Before and After Photos of the Proposed Sewing Center Building

        The old Day Care building located in Volcanes has been cleaned and painted by the city and has been officially inaugurated and given to the Volcanes Colonia for the exclusive use of a sewing school for the residents of Volcanes. 
     Measurements were done of the building to help Sewing Seeds International figure our how best to utilize the space as well as determine if changes need to be done to the structure.  Help on the proposed design of the Sewing School and the proposed new Sewing plant was also received from a retired expert in sewing plants who greatly helped in determining the flow of work to the layout of the equipment to assist in the flow of work.  The resulting plans were provided to Sewing Seeds International president and staff who visited the building and recommended the following changes; 
    Structural :
    • Remove 3 walls in back rooms to create large open room.
    • Raise floor in 2 open areas.
    • Install roof in 2 open areas and large back patio area. 
    • Install 4 windows in back patio area. 
    • Install roofing over front yard area
    • Enlarge electrical box
    • Install 2 two ton air conditioners
    • Install wall outlets in large open classroom areas
    • Install strip outlets on ceiling for drop lights.
    • Install hanging lights over work areas

    • Kitchen: 
    • Stove, refrigerator, table and chairs, shelving and fans. 
    • Office: 
    • Desk, chairs, file cabinet, computer & printer, phone and internet. 
    • Sewing machines and Furniture: 
    • 30 sewing machines (20 machines donated by Sewing Seeds )
    • 30 tables and chairs 
    • 2 large cutting tables 
    • Storage areas: 
    • Shelving for front storage room 
    • Shelving for back room 
    TOTAL EQUIPMENT BUDGET $ 100,000 pesos


    • COST OF EQUIPMENT                                                 $ 100,000 pesos 
    • TOTAL COST OF BUILDING AND EQUIPMENT    $ 151,000 pesos 
    • TOTAL COST                                                                  $ 251,000 pesos  ( $ 20,000 USD) 
    • 30 students (moms) graduate with diploma every 6 months 
    • Additional financial support for family: 
    • Find employment in sewing business in Puerto Vallarta 
    • Purchase sewing machine with micro loan and work at home 
    • Join Volcanes sewing manufacturing cooperative 
    • Less pressure on Secondaria and Prepatoria students to drop out of school to help support the family.