Emily Duffy’s smart sleeping bags for the homeless is also creating opportunities for them to get off the streets

emily duffy

I wanted to develop a sleeping bag that would solve some of the problems with existing cloth bags.

The idea came to 16-year-old Emily Duffy, when she was raising funds for a homeless shelter. It was then, Emily Duffy thought to invent a lightweight sleeping bag that can improve the quality of life for homeless individuals.

Emily replaced cloth, which becomes damp when it rains, with metallic bubble wrap. The material is lightweight, waterproof and the trapped air bubbles help to increase the warmth throughout the bag. The bag is also fire resistant. The bag has reflective strips outside that increases visibility at night. Velcro openings throughout the bag helps user to quickly enter and leave the bag if necessary, and an added pouch meant to keep clothing dry turns into a pillow once filled.

It is lightweight and designed to last. It will last many years and much longer than a conventional sleeping bag.

Emily Duffy’s innovative bag was a part of the ‘2015 BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition’, a young scientist convention. Nicknamed as ‘Duffily Bags’, these bags are already being put into practical use on the streets of Dublin. The Mendicity Institute in Dublin 8, a has started a program, where homeless people are paid 20 Euros for two hours of work to make the bags, offering them an opportunity to get off the streets.

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Image Credit: Mirror