Thursday, December 15th, 2016

The “Mat Lady”


A long-time friend of Central Office employee Linda Hutchins has a unique way of helping others.  Patti Barnett crochets sleeping mats for the homeless, using plastic grocery bags.  How resourceful is that?!  Her Mats can be rolled up and carried like a backpack, are waterproof, and are very soft.  But a lot of work goes into making just one mat.

Did you know that it takes approximately 1,000 grocery bags to make one 5’ mat?  Patti spends 8 hours a day making the mats and can’t make them fast enough and needs our help!

She has asked M&J staff to donate their gently used grocery bags (unused bags are not as soft and the bags from the recycling center are not in the best shape).  Atlanta employees: Please bring your stash of plastic grocery bags and place them in the designated box in the 17th floor break room or deliver them to Linda Hutchins on the 16th floor.  Donations from all M&J offices are welcome.

Patti will be crocheting mats year-round, with a team that helps her by sorting and folding the bags, getting them ready to be cut a certain way before crocheting can begin.

Let’s get the word out of the wonderful work Patti is doing for her community.  We encourage you to share this blog post on social media and with your family and friends so that Patti can receive an abundance of supplies. She hopes others will start making the mats too.

Linda teased her friend about being labeled a “bag lady,” but Patti said she preferred to be called the “mat lady.”

Great work Patti!

Patti poses with a finished mat

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