We make reusable tote bags made from old t-shirts and call them Kindness Bags. They are really simple to make and the kids can be involved in every step, making it a very empowering activity.
The kids feel proud knowing that they have made an item that will help out our planet by reducing our need for plastic single use bags. This is a great Act of Kindness that empowers them with the knowledge that they are awesome leaders who can make our world a better place now and in the future!
Three Steps for Making a Kindness Bag
Step 1: Cut off the sleeves to make the bag handles.
Step 2: Cut the neckline to make the opening for the bag. We use a plastic plate to help us draw out the semi-circle.
Step 3: Sew the bottom edge of the t-shirt together to make the bottom of the bag.
Then you will have a finished reusable tote bag!
We have used this activity in a bigger workshop where we make Kindness Bags to give out. We get the kids to also make a Kindness Card and a beaded necklace. We ask them to bring a gently loved stuffed animal and book. Then we put all this together with love and we gift it to an organization in our community. In the past, we have made some Kindness Bags for the Rwandan Centre to donate to children who are new to Ottawa and for the Heron Emergency Food Centre to donate to children who are accessing the Food Bank over the holidays.
To run the workshop smoothly, we set up three centres:
Kindness Card Making
Beaded Necklace Making
Kindness Bag Making – for this you will need a few tables: tables for cutting the t-shirts and tables for the sewing machines.
Having these three centres allows for the workshop to flow nicely. While kids are waiting for the seamstress to help them with the sewing, they can get to work on the other items.
I am sharing all this knowledge and experience in the hopes that others will be inspired to run a Kindness Bag Making Workshop for the kids in their community.
But I would also love to work on this with you. So, if you are in the Ottawa area and you are interested in having World-Changing Kids come in to your organization to run one of these Kindness Bag Workshops, please send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can come up with a plan that will fit your budget. We guarantee you it will be a super fun time!