From the Heart of … our team…

From the Heart of ... our team...

 9th Sep 2020 |  From The Heart Of... |  Margaret Ring

We are so happy to bring a new series of stories - From the Heart of...

Through this collection of stories, we want to take you to the centre of Secret Projects, right to our heart to discover what drives us as we journey towards our vision of of a world where all women have the confidence and resources to make choices, thrive and contribute to the strengthening of their communities.

What keeps us going? What joy and love do we encounter on the way to womens' empowerment? Read on as we begin, over the coming weeks, with our team - a group of committed and wonderful individuals who really are at the heart of Secret Projects...

We start with our Communications Manager, Margaret Ring... we asked her a number of questions about her Secret Projects life and her home life - here is what she has to say!

Question: In a nutshell what does your role at Secret Projects consist of?

Margaret: It's a fabulous role and I am not just saying that for PR reasons!!! I basically oversee our communications, from social media, our newsletters, brand guidelines to our website. I work closely with our Directors, which is great and I am learning so much. A large part of my role is to weave  our latest news into wonderful stories and send them out into the world to spread the story of Secret Projects to a wider and wider audience... and what's not to love about a job where much time is spent writing stories!


Question: Is there a typical day in you role? What does it look like?

Margaret: My role is so varied, fast paced and exciting that there isn't really a typical day and I absolutely love that!  No room for getting bored! I do have tasks that I need to complete each month such as getting With Heart our monthly newsletter pulled together and posts for Social Media, but I go with the flow and as a team we all 'jump on' what is our priority. I begin my day by catching up on emails and messages via our various 'Whatsapp' groups and then I see what is needed next...

Question: What did you do before Secret Projects?

Margaret: I have worked in the charity sector for many years now. I spent 14 years as a Volunteer and Project Manager at Voluntary Service Overseas, sending medical volunteers  around the world, to share their skills and help marginalised communities. My last position before joining Secret Projects was as a Project Manager and Fundraiser for a small charity, Adventure Ashram. A fantastic organisation that works hard to provide funds for small grass roots NGO's in India and this is where my deep love for India sprang from. It's also where I met Fritha, our CEO!

Question: How does your role at Secret Projects empower you?

Margaret: In so, so many ways! As part of a small team, we all need to be able to turn our hands to tasks that we might not have much experience in. I find this both thrilling and nerve-wracking at the same time! It feels amazingly empowering when I have learned something new to help me work smarter and to add to my repertoire! I love the way the Directors allow me to take on new areas for my self development and actively encourage the team to develop new skills. That is so empowering!

Question: What do you find most fulfilling about working at Secret Projects?

Margaret: I think it's the impact that we make within our Maker Groups, as the women earn an income to support themselves and their families. Our Makers don't want hand-outs, but to be given an opportunity use their sewing skills to earn money and that is exactly what Secret Projects provides. I find it so fulfilling to play a small role in this powerful model.

Question: Tell us a little about your life away from Secret Projects.

Margaret: I live in South London with my husband Johnny, a photographer, 20 year old son, Charlie, who is currently on a training programme for a company that hires cameras and lighting equipment to the TV and film industry and our dog, Marple, a beautiful creature, we re-homed from a rescue centre. She and I are pictured together!

I love living in London, but do enjoy escaping to the countryside and love going for long walks in the fresh air. One of my greatest passions is to travel and I visit India as often as I can - it's my favourite country and I adore the vibrancy of the culture.

I do some voluntary work (helping with their communications) for a small charity that works in the Spiti Valley in the Himalayas and find this very rewarding. Now my son is grown up, I have more time for voluntary work and it's something that I really enjoy.

And to end - a few other things about me... I loathe having to clean my house, am constantly frustrated that there is always washing to do... finally... I feel very happy as I walk Marple early in the morning - it sets me up for the day!


Let's finish with a bit of light-hearted fun!

Question: Dancing or walking?

Margaret: Dancing when I am on my own!!! (I'm not a good dancer!!!) I can walk for miles!

Question: Going out for the evening or staying at home?

Margaret: As I am getting older, it's definitely staying at home! I do love going out for lunch with friends these days.

Question: If you could have a one hour telephone conversation with anyone, who would it be?

Margaret: That's an interesting one... I think it would be Bishop Desmond Tutu. I really admire his strength, his open minded faith and compassion for humanity.

Question: As Secret Projects drives people to think about India what do you want to tell the world about India? What do you love most about the country?

Margaret: I would say go to India if you can. It is truly a place like no other - full of colour and life, but also hardship. I can't really explain how I feel when I am in India, there is such an energy and I feel privileged to have been able to explore communities away from the tourist trail.











Introducing the Secret Projects Dig Dog Range for pets!

Introducing the Secret Projects Dig Dog Range for pets!

Our latest range is for our four-legged friends! Introducing the Secret Projects Dig Dog range for pets! Pets love scraps and so do we! Made from the . . . scrap pieces of fabric left over from production of our other collections, we knew that our latest range for pets would go down a storm with pets and their owners alike! Although the bandannas are perhaps more appreciated by the owners than their furry companion, every dog will just love that each bandana comes with a matching treat bag - and all pet lovers know just how important treats are! Very handily, our little bags have a secure drawstring, so treats stay safely inside whilst out on a walk. Cuteness aside, (and this range is so cute...) our Dig Dog range is made for us by our Makers (the name we give to the women who lovingly stitch our products) and each woman is paid a fair wage for her skills and is able to use the money she earns with us to support herself, her children and her family. So, your pet is responsible for empowering women economically! Woof! The Dig Dog range is available in a range of sizes and pattern and colours - so you can be sure to find something that is perfect for your pooch! Click here to view the full collection.   Image: Coco and Biscuit resplendent in their Dig Dog range bandannas!      
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Our first destash!

Our first destash!

What to do on a rainy Sunday? Hold our very first destash! You may be asking what a destash is?  In short, it's a call out to people to go through old . . . sewing supplies and fabric etc. and donate it to a good cause. With that good cause being Secret Projects! We set up in the Pulborough Village Hall (which is close to where our Business Unit is), and, through various advertising methods, the word had spread and we were delighted to welcome scores of people who came along with their very gratefully received donations. Donations weren't just brought in on the day, we had parcels sent to us and others dropped supplies round to our CEO's house in Pulborough ahead of the official destash day. In total we collected 325 kilos of delici0us pre-loved sewing supplies. Much of the fabric donated has been sorted and will be made up into our ever popular and best selling scrap packs available through our eBay and Etsy Stores. In fact, we now have over 30 different scrap packs to purchase and more will be added, so do keep visiting our stores. We are still taking donations and if you do have any fabric or pre-loved sewing supplies, please do get in touch via And of course the most enormous thank you everyone who donated to, and also helped us run our very first destash! More to come! Let's hear it for destashing!   Image: offering a cup of tea to all who came along to the destash was one way of us saying a big thank you.
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We would LOVE you to donate any unwanted sewing supplies to us!

We would LOVE you to donate any unwanted sewing supplies to us!

We can make such good use of your pre-loved sewing supplies We have added various items of pre-loved sewing supplies to our online stores, including . . . scrap fabrics and buttons for the past few years and it has developed into a small but very good source of income for our Community Benefit Society. The pre-loved sewing supplies market is only getting stronger and is something we are keen to develop and grow and are therefore putting out an 'ask' to our customers and supporters (and of course, anyone else who reads this!) for your old sewing items. We would LOVE them! Ideas for sewing supplies donations! From scrap fabric, to buttons, to pins, to needles, to embroidery equipment, we would adore to talk to you about what you have. Sewing items can often have sentimental value - in fact, our Comms Manager, Margaret was just telling us about a pin cushion she has of her mother's that she could only give away to someone who would really appreciate, and make good use of. Maybe this has resonated with you. So, if you do have sewing supplies you would like to donate, please email Fritha Vincent Mason at: We would just LOVE your pre-loved sewing supplies!  
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