Plastic bags are a staple at many stores and a convenience for carrying multiple items. Now, plastic bags have a new purpose for those without a place to sleep.
For their Senior Capstone Project, Agnes Guiselin ‘20 (St. Christopher, Dayton) and Jeremiah Gar ‘20 (Dayton) enlisted help from others to create plastic bag mattresses.
“This entire project began two years ago when I attended the National Catholic Youth Conference,” said Guiselin. “It was there that I was inspired by a group of women crocheting mattresses out of plastic bags and it was there that I fell in love with this project.
“This entire project was based on some fun little hobby that I would sometimes do while watching a movie at home,” Guiselin continued. “Through God's helping hand, all those who have supported me these last two years, and our collective sheer determination, it has become something beyond my wildest expectations that I dream of one day handing off to some capable young hands to continue and to grow.”
Guiselin, a parishioner at St. Christopher Church in Vandalia, has spoken with the congregation to assist in the creation of mattresses as well.
“The plan is to have multiple individual groups working collaboratively to produce mats,” Guislen explained. “A professional photographer volunteered to videotape a how-to video on making the mats — something I am extraordinarily excited for — that will be posted online as to spread the word about this project and get people from all across the world helping out however they can.”
As many as 500 to 700 plastic bags are needed to create a single mattress.
“The kindness shown by the community and the amount of plastic bags donated has become overwhelming,” Guislen shared. “I know how this is helping so many people out there and I am reminded each day how much more work needs to be done.”
Currently the mattresses are being given to those being served at St. Vincent De Paul. In the future, Guiselin said she plans to also give mats to the House of Bread.