First of all, thank you for your continued support! It is so exciting to be part of such a wide spread and exciting organization dedicated 100% to helping others! I am enjoying the ride and I hope you are, too!
Just so you know, we receive hundreds of dresses each week from all over the world. The love that you put into them is simply amazing. I love the notes you include. They encourage me and those working as volunteers at the “Love Shack” that open boxes, sort, size and pack the beautiful little dresses for shipping! I never get tired of seeing how different each one is and how much love is sewn into every little dress! So, THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart.
Just so you know, I open the boxes and we put notes, checks, donations aside and I respond to those personally. Sometimes it takes a couple of weeks to get them all opened and responded to, so please be patient! If you include a self-addressed envelope, I will respond with a postcard, which you are free to use as a receipt for your donation.
After they are opened, volunteers go through them to make sure the dresses are sturdy and will with stand the harsh climate and washing conditions. Hand sewn dresses are generally not strong enough for this climate. Also, at this point, we sort and size them for packaging. We are SUPER grateful when you size them small, medium, large and x-large. Please do not indicate the sizes with straight pins as NO ONE wants to get stuck, especially in a foreign country. You can just gather them together and tie a ribbon around them and say “small” or put them in a plastic bag. Sizing them and rolling them is a major bonus.
One thing to note: If you use the pattern that slides a ribbon through the casing to tie, then PLEASE tack it down in the front and back so the ribbon does not slide out. We cannot send them if they are not tacked down as the kids will pull that out immediately and not have any way to keep them up. We usually repair these dresses so they eventually get there but it does delay their departure and increases the work load of our volunteers. It would help a lot if you’ll help us by tacking it down.
We then put them in boxes for shipping. Each box weighs about 24lbs. We send them domestically to mission groups who will pack them in their extra bags, or we mail them directly to communities throughout Africa that need them the most. Each domestic box is approximately $30-$45. and each international box is $141/ approximately and contains around 80-85 dresses. Help with shipping costs is not required but it is VERY much appreciated and I will respond with a postcard with our EIN number on it which you can use as a tax receipt if you choose to.
We also mail larger boxes by sea and it takes about 3 months for them to arrive. We also plan to send our second 40ft sea container and will be posting more information about that very soon.
I hope these reminders help. If you have questions, please contact me or send a note on facebook. I do not personally monitor that page every day but two awesome volunteers do and they will let me know if there is a question that they can’t answer. If you are in the area, please join us on the 2nd and 4th Thursday nights at 7pm and join in the fun packing. You will be amazing and we will be delighted that you joined us! 17830 Telegraph, 48174. Thank you and God bless you all for helping!!!!