Children's Hospital nurses repurposing surgical wraps to help the homeless

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Posted at 12:51 PM, Feb 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-18 09:03:40-05

(WXYZ) — Some nurses and surgical techs at Children's Hospital of Michigan are repurposing surgical wraps in order to help the homeless.

Nurse Jennifer Lund says she was inspired by a story she'd seen about a New Jersey operating room doing just that. She asked her colleagues and they started collecting the blue wraps.

"We were throwing away these sheets and adding to the landfills on a daily basis and now we found a useful purpose for them," Lund said.

Nurse Grace Ferguson says, "Every surgery we use a lot of these mats so every surgical procedure that we have, we use multiple of these to wrap instruments in that just get thrown in the trash."

Once the surgical wraps are collected, mothers of some of the nurses help out by doing the sewing. When they're finished, the mats roll up like yoga mats and have a space for a pillow. The group calls themselves "Surgical Suite Warm Heart Warriors" and they're planning on donating the mats to local organizations like Motor City Mitten Mission.

It helps the homeless and low income families. It's known for its Mats & Pillow project that uses recycled plastic bags.

Gail Marlow is executive director of Motor City Mitten Mission.

"A lot of the people living on the street, they're literally sleeping on the concrete or a sewer grate with steam coming up," Marlow said. "Any kind of barrier of protection to help with that is going to be helpful. I'm anxious to see them."

If you're an organization that could use some of these mats to help those in need, you can contact SS Warm Heart Warriors at