Local residents helping to make ‘milk-bag mats’ for those in need around the world

Alexandra McDiarmid displays one of the mats made from milk bags. Donations of the bags are being sought so more of them can be made. Photo by Alan Shackleton.


I felt this article was fitting since Earth Day took place recently.

I was inspired to make milk-bag mats while attending Bethany’s Baptist Church (East York) where I was volunteering between 2017 to 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic began. The Arts and Craft Circle run by Veta Riley constructed the mats with outer milk bags sleeves.

There was a large frame and a lot of weaving needed to make them. These mats are sent abroad to help developing countries to separate people from the ground while sitting and sleeping.

I learned more about this at https://milkbagsunlimited.ca/home/

Pastor Jim at the church constructed the frame we use to make the mats.  I received the frame this year and have been occupying myself making mats from the milk bags during the lockdown/stay home orders   I have completed seven mats and counting.

I would like to thank Ruth from Glen Rhodes United Church for the contribution of bags.

A special thanks goes to everyone in schools, churches and other organizations who are presently making these mats at home until we can send them abroad.

As a kind reminder, three million tonnes of plastic goes to our landfills each year. Milk bag sleeves have a more than 50-year lifespan and do not biodegrade very fast.

If you would like to contact me to learn how you can be involved and help, I can be reached at alexandramcdiarmid@gmail.com

Please save up your milk bag sleeves until a pickup or drop off can be arranged.

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