She is saving the planet, and her community.

Do you remember what you did after school when you were twelve?

Most twelve-year-olds are quick to run home after school and watch television, play with friends, or scroll on their phones. Alyssa Faith Fallorina Dean, however, uses her time differently.

After school, Alyssa collects discarded chip bags off the street. This is far more than just an act of good-will, or an attempt to beautify her neighborhood of Prestatyn in the UK– she’s trying to provide for the less fortunate.

A Brilliant Way to Make Something From Nothing

In a process involving a clothing iron, she seals the flattened bags into blankets that are lightweight, waterproof, and warming due to the foil the bags are made of.

She donates these blankets, along with toiletries and other essentials, to organizations that support people who are unhoused throughout Wales, and as far awat as Ukraine. So far, she’s turned over 10,000 chips bags into over 200 blankets. She shared a bit of the process with a news outlet, summarizing:

“Each packet has to be opened out so it’s flat and then washed in the sink.”

“Then you take four of them, put them under a piece of baking paper, and iron them so that the heat fuses them together.”

“Finally, you sandwich the crisp packets between two thin sheets of clear plastic, and you use the iron again to seal that in place. You wouldn’t think you could turn a crisp packet into something so helpful, but homeless people like the blankets because they’re really lightweight and waterproof.”

She shared that she originally got the idea from someone named Pen Huston, who started an initiative called the Crisp Packet Project, which aims to share the process for making these blankets and spread awareness around homelessness. Alyssa saw the group’s post on Facebook, and felt compelled to help.

Inspiring Selflessness Around the World

She started making the blankets in August 2021 and even asked her mother to get colleagues at work to start collecting old bags of chips for her.

“I saw on Facebook that people were starting to turn crisp packets into blankets, and thought I’d like to have a go at making them myself,” she told a news outlet.

Alyssa’s mother added: “she makes the blankets after school – it certainly keeps her away from her phone. She’s passionate about the environment, and the homeless support organizations in North Wales have been very positive about the blankets.”

Alyssa could be playing with friends after school, working on homework, or any of the other activities more typical for a 12 year old. Instead, she is choosing to donate her time and energy to making these blankets.

She is an inspiring example of selflessness, generosity and thoughtfulness. Her efforts are certainly appreciated, and a glowing example to those around the world of any age.