Juliana “Julie” de Jesus, 43 years old, is one of the active seamstresses who joined the Calatagan Sewers Association organized by the E. Zobel Foundation, Inc. in 2015 with a goal of empowering women through providing income generating opportunities and helping improve families’ economic status.

She started learning how to sew by making bags and purses using donated fabric. She has also now completed training on making school uniforms, baby dresses, pillow cases and tote bags.

Julie graduated high school and is living with her husband who is a sugar farm worker and hopes that her two sons will be able to finish their college education.

“Before I became part of the E. Zobel Foundation’s livelihood program, we used to go hungry because we didn’t have enough money to buy food but now, we’re able to buy food and also, we don’t have much difficulty paying the school fees for my two sons.”