Volunteers Crochet Plastic Bags into Sleeping Mats for the Homeless.


Homelessness is still a huge unsolved issue and one that has a long-lasting impact on a person’s psychical well-being. According to statistics, over half a million people are homeless in the US, 65% of them sleeping in shelters and 35% on the streets.
This problem can be solved by taking collective action and inspiring others to do the same, just the way this high-school senior from Lakewood did.
Shelby Tillema is a teenager concerned about the environment and social causes, so she took an example from Bev’s Bag Brigade, a non-profit focused on creating sleeping mats for the homeless and started her project. Their mats were unique as they have been made of “plarn” which is a plastic yarn made from recycled materials such as grocery bags.


By using this material to crochet the mats, they managed to tackle two issues: providing shelter for the homeless and recycling waste. Inspired by their story, Shelby created the Lakewood Plarn Club in her high school, a space where students can join forces and create something new out of used plastic. The members of the Plarn Club meet every day after classes and create high-quality, comfortable and water-resistant mats for the less fortunate. After the mats are ready, they are given to the Jeffco Action Center, who then gives them to the homeless.

This sweet story is just one of those that restores your faith in humanity and makes you hope for a better future with more responsible adults.

“You take recycled plastic grocery bags or just any plastic bags and you cut them into strips, and you tie those strips together and that makes this thing called plarn, plastic bag yarn,” president and club founder Shelby Tillema shared to JPS-TV.


4 Responses to “Volunteers Crochet Plastic Bags into Sleeping Mats for the Homeless.”

  1. Pina says:

    Excellent, productive, interactive. Time and energy put to good use. Do the knots in the plarn present a bumpy problem?

  2. Alice h says:

    Uh, nice try, but who wants to sleep on plastic? This may keep the damp off of them, but not very comfy. Why not just give them blankets and a foam mat?

  3. Cyrilla says:

    Im in MO and would love to start the plastic bag matts here. Could you please send me a direct link or web page. Bless you all for doing this for those less fortunate.

  4. Lavieta says:

    Fantastic job keep up the kindness

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