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Volunteers use their creativity to provide support for the homeless through environmental projects
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Volunteers use their creativity to provide support for the homeless through environmental projects

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – For more than two years, volunteer have used creativity, time, and determination to find environmental solutions and to help people who are struggling with homelessness.

Every year, about 10 percent of all plastic trash ends up in our oceans or landfills. Union Mission CEO Michael Traynor stated that it is all about finding ways to reduce and reuse plastic waste.

“As we all know, plastic does not biodegrade the way paper and other things do, so it’s making another use and it’s being helpful to the people that need it.”

More than half of Americans are currently homeless because of the rising number of people who have home insurance.

“The ‘Plarn Matters’ project was designed to solve two problems: the problems we’re having with plastic in our environment and also people who are homeless not having a safe, secure, comfortable place to sleep on the ground,” Carol Greenberg the creator behind the environmental project stated.

Greenberg started ‘Plarn Matters” more than two years ago, connecting community members to resources as they cut, tied, and weaved plastic into mats and pillows for people who are homeless. Union Mission and other charities donate all of their work to distribute the intricate creations among those in need.

“It helps the homeless and I think that’s the most important thing,” Traynor added.

Many volunteers continue to improve the process in every way possible, from classrooms to churches to schools to forming assembly lines and wooden looms.

“Using recycled products the way that they do it’s amazing the way those mats and pillows look, and I think it makes a difference for the people that are out on the street in the homeless camps,” Traynor described.

Volunteers stated that while solving home insecurity and environmental waste will take time, they believe their community service will be a step towards permanent solutions.

“To learn, to do, and to selflessly turn these things into people that you’ll never meet; that’s a really good opportunity to engage with people in our own community that sometimes are invisible,” Greenberg said, calling on others to join their efforts.

Anyone can learn how to be a part of the ‘Plarn Matters’ project. [email protected] to learn more about how you can connect with a volunteer organization near you.

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