Lifestyle

How your empty crisp packets can help the homeless… by turning them into blankets

Lad, 23, who was homeless himself, is saving lives through recycling

When we think of innovative programmes, they often involve machinery, big bucks or a large premises to house vast numbers of staff.

Yet one man has proven that having an entrepreneurial flair is enough to kickstart an initiative even without access to gadgets, funding or CEOs.

Meet Miley Porritt, helping the homeless with his ingenious blankets made from old crisp packets.

At just 23, the Somerset resident came up with the idea to recycle crisp packaging so that he could craft them into bedding – named Iron Man Survival Blankets – for a cold winter’s night.

Miley, who was homeless himself until he moved into a flat last month, posted the idea on Facebook on November 2 and his post has already reached more than 6million people.

Now, social networkers have been inspired to get involved and are donating crisp packets in their thousands, or even having a go at making blankets themselves.

Speaking about his project, Miley said he was shocked to see the outpouring of support and is delighted the idea has turned into a proper campaign.

Miley said: “We are working with charities all over the UK.

“Now we – I say ‘we’ as there are now so many people who are involved – are starting to get donations and we’re going to get volunteers to help make the blankets after lockdown.”

Chatting to his local paper, he added: “We are also fundraising to continue making the blankets and help the homeless in any way we can.

“I’ve spoken to charities and they are running out of sleeping bags and blankets and they are telling me this product will save lives.

“It was meant to be a small thing, I thought I would just raise a bit of money to give back. Now, hopefully I will be able to help as many people as possible.”

From personal experience, Miley knows that a simple blanket could have protected him as on many occasions he relied solely on a jacket to keep him warm.

He now hopes the blankets he has created can be used for sitting on or to wrap around the body as they are thick, waterproof and warm.

Miley exclusively told Uspire: “I was homeless because I had a few family issues. I was adopted at a young age, though am back on my feet now thanks to the YMCA Mendip. The blankets remind the homeless there are people out there who care about them.

“I’ve always cared about the environment and I have always liked making something out of nothing. I also love crisps, prawn cocktail is my favourite, so it’s a win-win.”

He added: “The response we have had is wonderful, hopefully we can get everyone in the UK to make at least one blanket!!”

Miley has also kickstarted a GoFundMe page, raising £2,309 at the time of publication, so that he can continue his mission to support vulnerable people in need.

Right, just off to chow down a multi-pack…

To donate to the project, visit here: Iron Man Survival Blankets

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