Mobile service & education
It is humbling to ask customers, friends, family, and strangers for money, but you believe strongly in a cause, you do it anyway!
Having a mobile unit for service & education is extremely important to Sewing Doc. This has been a dream for a very long time, but the Covid pandemic has made this cause even more urgent. Without your help, it feels like we'll never reach our goal.
We had the idea to 'go mobile' a few years ago, but it just wasn't priority because of the financial weight of the decision. We flirted with many ideas on what mobile would look like - what kind of vehicle would work? Could we afford it? Is it legally possible? Would it be worth it?
It started with soul searching, and why we would even want to pursue this endeavor:
Number one, we are most concerned about our vulnerable sewists. So many of our customers are older and unable to carry their machines to the car or even leave their home, so we'd like to meet them where they are to take care of their needs.
Number two, most of us are in agreement that this won't be the last time we see a viral pandemic in our lifetime and that we will see another quarantine at some point, so we'd rather be prepared to keep our customer's machines going with no-contact.
Number three, we serve a large community of low-income families that often rely on sewing business to keep food on the table. We'd like to remove any and all barriers to keeping their machines going without interruption in their production.
Number four, while the Academy is 95% completed online, at some point certification via demonstration will be necessary, and we haven't yet figured out how to solely handle this virtually. Our goal is to travel the country to teach these skills and certify technicians under the Sewing Doc name. this ambulance will accomplish this goal for us.
We found all the answers to these questions positive enough to dive in, and we did! Once the pandemic hit in 2020, we figured out that an ambulance not only lends itself to the Sewing Doc brand, but it also makes the PERFECT mobile workshop. Lots of storage space, space big enough to build a proper workbench, and plenty of space on the inside to house tools, parts, and other necessities. On top of that, it can double as a filming studio to push out content to those that have a desire to learn the skill of sewing machine service and repair.
After much research, we found several retired ambulance options. Long story short, a tree fell on my car the morning after 3 tornadoes hit our area, and because we only needed one day-to-day vehicle, we put the money toward the investment. A day trip was made to Ohio to purchase the ambulance, but unfortunately, we hit a snafu on our drive back home. We had it towed to our home and it is being used as Andi's home workshop and filming studio while it's stationary.
Finding skilled mechanics to work on diesel van-style vehicles is not easy, but we know in order for it to be reliable and travel the country, it needs to have the engine replaced or "bulletproofed". This is our goal to make the Sewing Doc ambulance fully mobile.