Weekly sewing class reintroduced

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You could have heard a pin drop.

All was quiet on the baby front as mothers multi-tasked — alternating between a gentle rock of their child’s pushchair and sewing in Alexandra recently.

The initiative, offered through Uruuruwhenua Health, is part of a weekly gathering called Mama Pepi Roopu, lead by Strengthening Families coordinator Shona Bain.

Uruuruwhenua Health Whanau Ora navigator Liv Gardner said the initiative was designed to foster relationships and a sense of community and aroha among mothers with new babies throughout the district.

They will focus on sewing classes with a Christmas theme throughout December, hosted by Mrs Bain, who will show them how to make reusable gift bags, baby bibs and face masks, among other projects.

A similar initiative to support mothers with young babies was offered about five years ago, but it stopped.

Uruuruwhenua decided to relaunch the group following Covid-19 and it now attracts eight to 15 mothers and their babies each week.

The group, which meets in the rooms at the back of the Alexandra Baptist Church each Thursday morning, perform a karakia and waiata to provide a sense of welcome to everyone who attends.

Participant Denise Murray-Karaka said it provides mothers with a chance to relearn within a welcoming space alongside their babies.

She said the key was to ‘‘normalise’’ the experience for everyone who attends — babies included.

And going by the lack of noise coming from the babies when The News visited, the youngsters appear to have approved of the concept as much as the mothers.

Fun for all . . . Taking part in a sewing session are (from left) Denise Murray-Karaka, with Giana-Joy Karaka-Nichol (four months), Amber-Lee Kahukura, with Majah Ngataki (six months) and Live Gardner with Adalyn Whyte (six months). PHOTO: ALEXIA JOHNSTON
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