Getting Involved

Keena 11

Throughout this year Infuse will be helping the homeless and we need your help!

Infuse has started making plastic mats for the homeless by re-purposing all those plastic grocery bags that we have laying around. We all have them and now we have found a way to do some good with them. There are three ways you can help. We need people or groups to collect the bags, people to make the bags into plarn (plastic yarn), and people to crochet the plarn into mats.

Here’s what you can do to help:

Collecting plastic bags: Talk to people in your church, family, and friends and start collecting the bags. You can keep them and move on to step two or send them in for someone else to make the strips if you prefer.

Plarn making: Lay the bag out flat, fold in half lengthwise and fold in half again, cut off the top handles and the bottom seam, and then cut bag in strips about 2 inches. When tying the strips together you are making a slip knot. Pull one strip up through the loop of another. Fold the inner strip over the other and down through itself, gently pulling on ends to knot two strips together (should look like a “Y”). Connect the next strip to last strip in the same manner and continue connecting strips until you have a large ball of plastic yarn, ‘plarn’.

Crocheting: To crochet the mat: Start by making 36 inch or slightly longer chain. With an N hook, this comes to about 90 stitches. Add an extra 3 chain, then turn. Double crochet in the second chain from the hook and continue to work in double crochet to the end. Chain three, turn and repeat. Continue until the mat is at 6 feet in length.

To make a carry strap: Leave about 12 inches then start an 80 inch long chain. Turn and work a second row in single crochet. Repeat until you have 4 rows. Leave about 12 inches as a tail. Fold the ends of the strap so it has about a 4 inch loop. Connect with the 12 inch strip of plarn. This will make a loop that the strap will go through.

Updates on our project:

12/22/2017
We have made 124 mats, 111 carrying straps, and using the scrapes of plastic left over from the bags, have made 21 pillows. We have used an estimated 65,670 bags!!!!

3/21/2017
This is why we do what we do!!!! Pray not only for those using these mats, but for those who are passing them out as well!
Shared on Facebook from Kevin Lilly and the Mobile Shower Unit
“A load of mats that were made by Making Mats hit the streets in Greenville SC this week and we will ship more to help this wonderful ministry as they engage the homeless. We are joining hands with so many as we serve a wonderful God.”

11/9/2017
111 Mat!!! Once the strap is finished we will have used an estimated 59,445 plastic bags.

10/27/2017
Mat number 110!!! Our bag count is 58,860!!!!

8/18/2017
We are now up to 107 mats and straps. We have been able to help 92 people have something to sleep on or cover up with since we started.

7/30/2017

While we have slowed down some for the summer we are picking up again and have completed 106 mats and 20 pillows. Our estimated bag count is at 56,590!!!

We are still in need of deodorant and travel save cream for our hygiene kits.

7/22/2017
Someone has messaged us and said that they would like to make hats and scarves to be passed out in the winter with our mats. The only thing they ask is if we could donate some yarn to them. They have already donated some items to us and really want to help up help the homeless. If you can help please message us or send anything else you would like to donate to PO box 2967 Lancaster South Carolina 29721.
Thank you all in advance.

7/20/2017
We have another hygiene give away coming up and need your help!!! We are in need of soap and deodorant in travel or regular sizes.
If you would like to help, please send items to Making Mats or Infuse at P.O. Box 2967 Lancaster SC 29721

7/4/2017
This project started Nov 2016 and in that time we have made 103 plastic sleeping mats for the homeless that each have a carrying strap made out of plastic and 20 pillows made out of plastic bags and stuffed with the bag scraps that could not be made in to plarn. We have used and estimated 55 thousand bags! That is 55 thousand bags that are staying out of landfills, oceans, and other water ways! I personally want to thank everyone who has helped on this project in any way. We could not help the people we have and will be helping with out each and every one of you!
Keep calm and plarn on!!!!

6/26/2017

19 mats, 77 hygiene kits for men, 30 for women, laundry detergent, fabric softener, dish soap, and toilet paper. This is what we did over the weekend at the Infuse summer retreat in Memphis Tennessee. These mats came from South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and Ohio.
Joetta your mat went to man in SC then was given back and will now be going to someone in Mississippi.
Eric And KeenaAthena, Jenna, and Joy (the two from your mother’s knitting group are in here as well.

 

6/13/2017
This is such a blessing!!!

6/7/2017
We did it!!! 100!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

3/22/2017
We have reached 80 Mats and straps along with 15 pillows. We estimate that we have used 38,600 bags!

3/21/2017
The 5th mat was placed at the food box at Treasures R Us location.

3/17/2017
In one week we have placed 3 mats and 3 plarn pillows out at this food box. People are coming to get food when they need it and these mats are there for them if they need them.

 3/13/2017
A box has been placed at Treasures R Us a resale shop in Lancaster SC. This box is not just for the homeless, but for anyone in need of food. We have placed a mat with a plarn pillow under the box for anyone who needs it. While spring is almost here, it is still rather cold at night and right now it is getting colder. The warming center here in Lancaster will close March 15 and now more than ever we need to get these mats out to those who need them.
 
3/13/2017
After a weekend of plarn making, and a lot of bag flattening we have reach 79 mats!!!! We are over 38 thousand bags!!!!!
 
2/27/2017
A huge thank you to Nutramax Laboratories! For the last two months they have been collecting bags for us. This has been a huge blessing!
 
3/27/2017
Its been a long road for one couple, but they are getting a place to call home in the next week or so!!!
While staying in the warming center here in Lancaster, SC they have saved up their money, and will be able to move into a place with first and last months rent. People are looking for ways to help them get the deposits they need on the utilities as they are very high for people with low or no credit scores. Please keep this couple in your prayers!
 
2/22/2017
Would anyone like some bags? We need a few people to take some bags and turn them into strips or loop them into plarn. I have 20 garbage bags filled with bags right now. I can give you a stack of flattened if you would like to skip that step. Thank you for your help.
 
3/21/2017
We had a plarntastic time with Girl Scout troop 1287! Check out the facebook page for more photos!
 
3/16/2017
We are in need of new or gently used pillow cases. These are for the plarn pillows we make. The cases are to make the pillows more comfortable to use and can be washed when needed.
 
2/11/2017
Two groups had a plarntastic day today. We taught some new people how to plarn in Flat Rock, NC while an experienced group had a “plarning Fiesta” in Auburndale, FL. Please check out the facebook page for more photos.
 
2/10/2017
A mat was made with one very large ball + 8 strips! Arin Hale (10 years old) did a great job looping the strips together to make the biggest plarn ball we have ever received! Thank you Mrs. Keena for crocheting the big one! This puts us up to 76 mats and bag total over 36 thousand!!!
 
1/30/2017
74th mat completed!!! 35,710 bags used so far!
 
1/24/2017
72 Mats and straps brings the total bags to 34,680!!!!!1/7/2017
10 Mats have gone to the Warming Center in Lancaster SC. these mats will line the cots to make them a little softer and warmer while sleeping.
 
12/27/2016
We had a wonderful time at Winter Family Weekend and had a good turn out for our plarn party!. Thank you to all that came to help and those who dropped off bags!
 
12/13/2017
We were on our local news! The cut out the parts about the church, but we are so thankful that we are getting the word out about homelessness. https://vimeo.com/195374804
 
12/12/2016
Making Mats now has its very own e-mail! If you would like to get a plarn party, mail bags, or have any questions e-mail then to makingplasticmats@gmail.com.
 
12/6/2016
64!!!! Total is now 30,880
 
12/1/2016
Mat number 63!!! With each mat having a strap and 12 pillows finished we have used and estimated 30,405 bags!!! Way to go everyone!If you want to get involved please message us or call Sherri 803-288-643611/16/2016
58 Mats and straps finished + 11 pillows =27,990 bags!!!!
 
11/12/2016
54 mats and straps, and 11 pillows completed! 26,090 (estimated) bags! If you are in Lancaster come out and see us and the Shower Truck Monday 109 S Wylie St. 10:30-1:00.
 
12/2/2016
This is the shower van that we have given 9 mats to and plan on giving more as they are needed. http://www.cn2.com/mobile-homeless-van/
 
10/31/2016
In right at a year we now have 53 mats made and 10 pillows!!! This puts our estimated bag count to 25,575!!! We are always looking for volunteers. We need people to collect bags, cut bags, loop the strips together and crochet. If you would like to help feel free to message or call. Sherri 803-288-6436
 
 
 

Please e-mail sherriwilkes@hotmail.com if interested in helping with any or all of the steps. If you would like to donate plastic bags, plarn, or hooks please send them to:

Making Mats c/o Infuse P.O. Box 2967 Lancaster, SC 29721

We also have a Facebook page for Making Mats https://www.facebook.com/MakingMats/


 

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