Up-cycling Old T’shirts into Cuddly Bears

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Happy cuddling bears made by Singaporean ladies teams

One man’s junk is another man’s treasure is an adage we take on board wholeheartedly at The Blue Ribbon (TBR). A simple idea with a disproportionate impact. TBR in collaboration with BE Incorporated Singapore offer the dignity of work to Singaporean ladies with needs who put their seamstress skills to good use.

Where recycling is noble, they take it a step further in shredding surplus t-shirts for material to make stuffed toys. The unwanted is therefore ‘upcycled’ into instruments of smiles for children. TBR’s next delivery of these stuffed bears will be in April of 2017 to underprivileged students in Guizhou, China. The model is not ‘rocket science’ so that it is easily scalable and most importantly sustainable.

TBR’s team of mothers from low-income families have a proven record of accomplishment with delivery of T-shirts that have been transformed into Bermuda shorts to stateless children in Sabah and children from poor families in Batam, Indonesia. The latter having been a project with Torch Light foundation, Indonesia. The premise for this sewing project has been sponsored by Lakeside Family Services ever since DL-2GO’s inception in Singapore in July 2014.

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TBR’s sewers learning computer from TP student

Mothers need not fret about not having any prior experience in threading needles. All sewing skills can be acquired and taught on the job by other mothers who gratefully pass on the skills they had acquired from past projects.

The impetus a mother has to look after her family has an implicit reliability. A society’s success or failure depends strongly on the health of the household and we believe that mothers are the backbone of that structure. We hope to be merely agents in channeling this in a manner that benefits society at large.

News by: Pradeep Padmanaban (TBR Malaysia)

About Norani Abu Bakar

An academic, advocate and facilitator in peace building, diversity and inclusion.
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