Skip to main content

I saw this story on Facebook, I shared it on Facebook, but I think that many more people need to see it, so I'm publishing it here.  It's the sort of story that brings people together -- and that we need to bring into our respective communities.

The title is fairly innocuous: Design student creates coat for homeless people.  A less dispassionate title might be: "Countless lives of homeless may now be saved, for $7 apiece."

How?  By making it less likely that they will freeze to death.

As the 22-year-old designer, Veronika Scott of Detroit, says: "It's a coat for the homeless that turns into a sleeping bag at night."

As the story says, it's newly developed -- and it's going national.

(Note: I have no ties at all to this product, pecuniary or otherwise.)

"What I found, in working at shelters and getting to know homeless people, is that pride is one of their biggest needs," Scott said. "Whether or not they can get into a shelter, they want to be able to take care of themselves."

Part of that pride, Scott learned, meant being able to sleep outside without freezing to death. In Detroit in the winter, a homeless person can die of exposure even in the daytime.  To Scott, the logical thing was to devise a warm coat for the daytime that could also be used as a life-saving blanket at night.

Scott takes synthetic quilting used in industrial clothing and stitches it to an outer shell of Tyvek, a paper-thin, crinkly material used in mail envelopes and building insulation. Tyvek is so water resistant and heat-trapping that Scott and her friends have been able to sleep in 17-degree weather, in the snow, and stay warm, she said.

The coat-bag weighs only 1 pound and looks like an extra-large coat with a big hood. It costs $7 to $10 to produce.

(Check out the linked story for a photo.)

My reaction is: "damn, this makes me believe in something again."

President Obama, please give this woman a medal -- and help her find a market.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site