Pedals for Progress has recently developed a unique partnership with Angels in Flight to send donated sewing machines to La Cuenca, Costa Rica. Founded by Cindy Paulus, Angels in Flight is a group of JetBlue flight attendants seeking to do what they can to make positive changes in the areas to which they travel. In the case of La Cuenca, P4P has been able to help by supplying donated sewing machines to a local sewing center established by Angels in Flight.
Sewing machines are a distinct challenge for P4P to ship overseas. It’s enormously expensive to send them by air freight, which is really the only feasible way to ship them conventionally—we can’t load a shipping container with sewing machines like we do bikes because it would take thousands of them to fill it and not only would it take years to collect such a vast amount, but what overseas partner could possibly absorb that many? So, typically, we send a few at a time along with our bikes to partners who also have sewing projects, like EIAAT in Uganda. Or, we are able to place them among the goods shipped by others, as in the case of International Relief and Development and their project in Georgia. We get them out however we can.
With Angels in Flight, one of our sewing machines gets a first class ticket with Cindy whenever she heads down to La Cuenca, located in the mountainous central region of Costa Rica in impoverished Heredia province. The neighborhood sewing center is dedicated to teaching local women a new craft and allowing them a fighting chance to put lives of drug use and prostitution behind them. So far, Cindy has been able to bring seven of our sewing machines, one at a time, with her to Costa Rica to stock the center.
We hope to be able to assist Cindy and all of the Angels in Flight in their endeavors to aid the needful communities they visit so often and wish so dearly to help.