The Senior Ladies Sunday School class at Ives Memorial Baptist Church in Pinebluff donated handmade sleeping mats for the homeless to the Aberdeen Police Department.
The class members are Viola Baggett, Becky Byrd, Sherry Carter, Betty Jean Hardy, Debbie McMurray, Faye Stark, and Bonnie Thomas.
The group presented the mats to members of the Aberdeen Police Department on Oct. 16 at their church.
The mats are made from plastic grocery bags, lots of plastic grocery bags. In fact, every 3 feet by 6 feet mat requires about 700 bags.
The mats are waterproof and serve as a bed keeping people dry while providing a layer of warmth between the ground. The mats can also be folded out and used as a blanket. The ladies also make pillows out of the plastic bags.
The group was looking for a mission to do and found a group of ladies in Hope Mills that were making these mats. They traveled to Hope Mills and learned how to make them.
Originally, the mats were crocheted by hand by two members. Recently, they were able to get a loom that they could use to increase production. They are hoping to get another loom as well.
The ladies have been working on the mats for about three to four years but had to shut down for an extended period during the pandemic. They have been donating mats to the homeless and thought of law enforcement since they encounter many of the homeless.
The church members bring in their grocery bags for the group and, thus far, they have been well supplied. They still are happy to take donations of bags.
The group meets the first and third Saturday of each month at the church to work on the bags if any other churches or groups would like to come learn.
For those that cannot crochet, there is still plenty to be done with prepping the bags. The bags must be prepped by being cut down into strips and prepared for the loom or those doing the crocheting.
If you or your group are interested in learning more or coming out to help, please call Debbie at Ives Memorial Baptist Church at (910) 281-3247. You will find yourself truly inspired by this wonderful group of ladies.
~Article and photos by Sandhills Sentinel Publisher B.J. Goodridge.