Helping a tailor from Vitebsk who is being repressed for sewing national symbols

  • Story

I live alone together with my son in Vitebsk in rented accommodation and have my own atelier for sewing and repairing clothes. From the first days of the protest I sewed our national flags. At first I sewed a lot, free of charge, because I wanted to help somehow and support the righteous cause. Then people started to pay for my work themselves, because they understood that I needed at least some means to make a living. So I continued to sew flags and other paraphernalia. 

In January 2021 the police came to my workshop with a search. Everything was confiscated. It turned out that someone not indifferent had called and told them that such and such a woman was sewing something. I was dragged through the interrogations, talked, shouted and searched for a long time. There was pressure both at home and at work. So I was left with practically nothing: with debts for fabrics, for rent, for rented accommodation. They confiscated a lot of materials that I could work with for a whole month, and I am still the only breadwinner in our family. We live together with my son, who is still in school. My husband died four years ago. 

After being interrogated, threatened, “talked to” and searched, I thought I got off with a minor scare, since I wasn't even fined. But it wasn't like that. I sewed some products in our city for the state. For kindergarten bedding, overalls for businesses, curtains, tablecloths, etc.. After my trips to the police all these organizations throw up their hands and said: “You know everything. So with me all stopped working.

Exactly one year later, in January 2022 they started calling me again and questioning me. They demanded I give up all the clients and the names of the people I knew who had taken part in the protests. They want me to testify against them. Of course I didn't give in, but they put pressure on me from all sides. They are threatening to turn me in to Social Security and criminal proceedings, and recently my IE has been filed for liquidation.

Alone I can not cope in this situation. There is work, but not on such a scale as to cope with everything. I would be grateful to anyone who can give me a little help, so I can move freely on my own.

How much is needed?

3000€ — rent debts; material support for me and my son in the beginning.

The collection is over. Сollected:
€ 568
The collection is over. Сollected: € 568