Refugees who gain asylum in first-world countries face dual challenges: poverty and unemployment. They need marketable skills.
The Good Fair is an organization that teaches refugees how to make high-quality crafts, with the help of volunteers instructors and charitable donors. With your help, refugee families will gain confidence, learn self-reliance, and take their first steps to building a prosperous future.
My name is Dede Sonntag and I have been a graphic designer for over 12 years. In my free time, I volunteer as a family mentor for former refugees and recent immigrants to the US.
I saw a way to connect my passion for human rights with my skills of arts and crafts. So I started The Good Fair. Thanks for checking it out. I hope you’ll get involved!
While volunteering, I’ve been exposed to real issues facing refugees, including culture shock, language barriers and difficulties applying for jobs.
Not all refugees arrive with marketable skills, which, combined with cultural differences and lack of language skills, make it impossible to become self-sufficient.
There’s a large refugee population at high risk of falling into poverty, even after being offered asylum.
The project explained:
After several months of research, I’ve developed a project to teach crafts to refugees during the period of downtime between leaving their country and receiving asylum. These crafts include: knitting, sewing, pottery and jewelry.
Why this initiative works
There are several volunteering efforts that have used this principle with great success. Some examples are listed at bottom under Sources.
How is this different?
Most volunteering efforts focus on very small groups and don’t empower refugees to help other refugees in need.
Other initiatives give aid to refugees but don’t teach self-reliance.
This project is cross-cultural, empowering, scalable, low-tech, and low cost.
Craft classes do not need a formal training room, which makes it portable.