Project Jeans: 16-year-old Indian turns old jeans into sleeping bags for homeless people in Delhi

The 16-year-old Indian Nirvaan Somany has come up with an innovative way to help the homeless stay warm in the winter by turning old jeans into sleeping bags.

Homeless people often endure harsh winter temperatures with little protection from the elements. But one teenager has decided to make a change by taking a simple yet sustainable step to help them. Sixteen-year-old Nirvaan Somany, from Delhi, started Project Jeans to help homeless people stay warm by collecting old jeans and use them to make sleeping bags.

Sleeping Bags from used jeans

Nirvaan discovered that 10,000 liters of water are needed to make a single pair of jeans. This made him think about ways to help the environment while providing a solution to the homeless. He saw an opportunity in old denim jeans which are strong, durable, and have good insulating properties. Using this knowledge, he created Project Jeans to make sleeping bags that could provide comfort and warmth to the homeless population, writes The Better India on its website.


The Initiative

Nirvaan’s mother works in the clothing business, which gave him easy access to someone knowledgeable in the field. He collected over 1,400 pairs of jeans over six months, which were used to make over 100 sleeping bags. To make a sleeping bag, he needs seven pairs of jeans. After removing the belt portion of the jeans, he cuts the legs into strips, adds a lining of cloth, and then a layer of foam for insulation. The Somanys made a prototype of the sleeping bag to ensure its effectiveness in protecting against the cold. Nirvaan’s initiative also offers employment to ten women to make these sleeping bags. They can make one bag per day, which adds up to 300 bags a month. The cost of each bag is Rs. 800, which includes the wages of the tailors, the foam, and lining cloth.

The Impact

Nirvaan and his team distributed 112 sleeping bags on the streets of Delhi, and they plan to make 50 more by the end of this month. The sleeping bags will be distributed with the help of the Robin Hood Army, The Robin Hood Army is a volunteer-based, zero-funds organization that works to get surplus food from restaurants and the community to serve less fortunate people. a volunteer-based organization that works to get surplus food from restaurants and events to the less fortunate.

The Lions Club of Mumbai Millennials collaborated with Project Jeans to distribute denim-turned-sleeping bags to the homeless near Parel. Source: Instagram Project Jeans

Project Jeans has collection centers in different cities across India, and the initiative has managed to sell some of the sleeping bags, but it primarily relies on crowdfunding to recover its costs.

If you want to help out homeless sisters and brothers in your neighborhood, you can find ten great tips in this BrightVibes article.

How to support Project Jeans

You too can make a difference by donating to Project Jeans. This initiative is an inspiration for everyone to think about sustainable ways to help those in need. It encourages us to reduce waste and reuse resources that may have been discarded. Project Jeans is an excellent reminder of the positive impact that one person can make. 

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