Fabric for Family
Clothing donations get a second life at the St. Rose of Lima community! Students in Kindergarten to grade 8 at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Elementary School worked together with a couple community partners to complete the “Fabric for Family” Action Project. The students wanted to highlight the importance of keeping items out of landfills and the importance of upcycling or reusing fabric that has outlived its purpose. This was accomplished in a few ways. A community clothing drive was hosted primarily at St. Rose of Lima. Also, certain students, who were also Cub Scouts and were working on their community service project, reached out to neighbouring streets beside St. Rose of Lima and their Cub group with flyers explaining the event and collected for the initiative.
This tied into the Religion curriculum with Environmental Stewardship, the Catholic Graduate Expectations of being a responsible citizen, and to various Eco Schools initiatives. Community was fostered through environmental consciousness and creating an appreciation for efforts related to environmental sustainability.
Students from Kindergarten to grade 8 at St. Rose of Lima and people in the community had the opportunity to donate their used clothes. Numerous bags were collected and donated to St. Catherine’s Closet, a local community charity, that St. Rose selected to work in partnership with. The idea was to reduce inequalities by offering access to free clothing that was no longer being used and kept out of landfills by being reused. This greatly helped our community “brothers and sisters” in need. St. Catherine’s Closet then hosted clothing market for those in need to come and “shop” for clothes without having to pay for them. Families felt happy to be able to provide for their families and bring home new clothes.
Some fabrics were held back and cut up for various art projects. St. Rose of Lima partnered with Visual Arts Mississauga, a local not-for-profit organization. Visual Arts Mississauga hosted fabric art workshops for every class at St. Rose of Lima. It was nice to see how the fabrics were used in the various art projects at the different age levels. Students enjoyed the half day workshops and really took the time to plan and enjoy creating with fabric. Students were proud of their finished products and had a beautiful gift to give to a family member. We also strengthened our bond with the local senior residents by offering some fabric art as a neighbourly gesture.
It was hoped that the experience of caring for the environment by keeping textiles out of landfills, giving to those in need, and upcycling materials would be transferred to caring for the environment on a conscious level and influence becoming a responsible citizen, which is a Catholic Graduate Expectation.
Reflection & Celebration
Staff at St. Rose of Lima and School Parent Council (who helped finance part of the workshops) are very proud of the student leaders who hosted this Action Project. The students had wonderful ideas, took initiative, demonstrated enthusiasm and care, and put forth great effort. Congratulations on a wonderful project with intentional steps to make an environmental impact and to promote environmental sustainability.