For Immediate Release:
November 17, 2017
Primary Media Contact:
Public Relations Specialist
A service project Laurel Ridge employees and other volunteers are undertaking has multiple beneficiaries – the homeless and the environment.
Every other week, they get together and recycle plastic bags into a material that can be knitted or crocheted to create a sleeping mat for a homeless person.
“When we get the plastic, we make a product called plarn, or plastic yarn,” says Laurel Ridge education support specialist Jill Manuel, who started the initiative at the Fauquier Campus. “We cut the plastic and then we link it together to create yardage and then we will knit and crochet it into a mat.”
It takes 700 plastic bags to make one sleeping mat. The thicker and heavier the bag, the better the plarn.
The mats will be donated to Micah Ecumenical Ministries in Fredericksburg.
Manuel started working on the mats with a friend, and when her colleagues heard about what she was doing, they wanted to help out. Fauquier Campus Dean Caroline Wood offered space at Laurel Ridge for the volunteers to do their plarning. Volunteers have met up several times already.
“I’m so excited that it’s taken on life like it has,” Manuel says. “I’ve been collecting bags for more than a year and I didn’t expect this much support. It was just something I wanted to do to help out my community.”
There are no age requirements for those interested in helping out with the plarning, and donations of plastic bags are welcome at both the Fauquier Campus and the Middletown Campus.
Those wishing to donate bags to the Middletown Campus, can contact Kristin Iden at [email protected]
Founded in 1970, Laurel Ridge Community College is a multi-campus public institution of higher education. With four locations — Middletown, Warrenton, Luray-Page County and most recently, Vint Hill— the College serves eight localities in the Shenandoah Valley and northern Piedmont regions. The localities are the counties of Clarke, Fauquier, Frederick, Page, Rappahannock, Shenandoah and Warren and the city of Winchester. Laurel Ridge offers more than 75 associate degree and certificate programs in a wide variety of disciplines, in addition to providing access to bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs offered on site by a four-year institution. Laurel Ridge also serves the business community by offering workforce preparation programs for employees and employers. Laurel Ridge serves more than 9,000 unduplicated credit students and more than 11,000 individuals in professional development and business and industry courses annually.
Laurel Ridge Community College (Laurel Ridge) is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award associate degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Laurel Ridge Community College. Laurel Ridge Community College is an equal opportunity institution providing educational and employment opportunities, programs, services, and activities and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, age, religion, disability, national origin, marital status, political affiliation, sexual orientation, or other non-merit factors. Laurel Ridge also prohibits sexual misconduct including sexual violence or harassment.
Laurel Ridge Community College was known as Lord Fairfax Community College until June 2022. For consistency purposes, the college will be referenced as Laurel Ridge going forward.