From months of collecting plastic bags on campus and storing them in bags, I finally came up with a useful idea I thought would be worth trying.On the 15th of July we had the first of the few heavy showers we have had for the year and it was a welcome gift from the heat and dry from the first half of the year. So, for all of us who had to go about our usual daily chores, it seemed like we were in need of something to cover and protect us while allowing us to enjoy our daily routine in the rain.
And I thought about all the plastic collected and wondered if we could turn them into hats and rain coats and shoes! I also came across this webpage of some designers in South America who made boots out of recycled plastic bags and were quite fashionable and it inspired me to think of simple useful products for the people in rural areas who are really not equipped for the once in a year rains.
So, without wasting any time we got to it and made a couple of hats. Initially the girls at the centre were a bit apprehensive but once the samples were done they seemed really excited by them and it encouraged me to seriously want to take this idea forward. So we made a raincoat next. Next in line may be the possibility of making gum boots based on the same idea.
By working with recycled plastic bags I hope to be able to find an alternative for all the plastic waste that goes into the dumps in our cities and towns. I would really like to target the villages around the SEDS campus, and on the campus itself as a start.
As of now collection for the plastic is something that needs to be looked into on a more defined manner, and using them in more innovative ways. We will look into areas where we can introduce a system of collecting plastic from homes that would otherwise just be thrown into a bin for the garbage trucks to collect.