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Emirates is Transforming 50,000 KG of Old Seat Covers into Backpacks For Children in Need in Africa and Asia

Emirates is Transforming 50,000 KG of Old Seat Covers into Backpacks For Children in Need in Africa and Asia

a group of bags on a white background

Emirates is transforming more than 50,000 kilograms of old seat covers into new custom-made backpacks and school bags for children in need in Africa and Asia as part of its charity and sustainability efforts.

The Dubai-based airline is currently embarking on a massive cabin refresh programme, which will see nearly 200 aircraft fully refurbished from head to toe, including refreshed and refurbished seats.

The question, however, is what should be done with the old material, which is still in good condition? Rather than disposing of the material, Emirates has decided to transform the Economy Class seat covers, using an in-house team of designers and tailors to create a range of bags to be donated to charity.

So far, 5,205 kilograms of scrap materials have been recovered from 22 Airbus A380 aircraft that have already been retrofitted with new interiors and these will be upcycled into a range of backpacks and school bags.

“Countless hours have been invested into making these bags for children; it’s a true passion project for our diligent team,” commented Ahmed Safa, Emirates’ SVP for engineering.

“We’ve even had volunteers within the larger company come forward and offer to help with the project, there is a huge appetite to contribute and support entities in need,” Safa continued.

The recovered materials have been laundered, cleaned by hand and then disinfected before being transformed into bags. Brand-new linings have been added to the bags, along with zippers and adjustable straps.

All of the bags will be made by hand at Emirates’ engineering workshops in Dubai by a team of tailors who are officially known as Engineering Maintenance Assistants. Once produced, the bags will be distributed to schools, orphanages, and various charity foundations across Africa and Asia.

As well as this charity endeavour, Emirates has been upcycling the leather seat covers from refreshed First and Business Class seats, although this capsule collection of luggage, bags and accessories are for sale with all proceeds being donated to charity.

Along with leather seat covers, the project also uses seat belts and materials from the pilot’s seats to create backpacks, handbags, luggage and accessories.

The range includes a $130 handbag and $200 backpacks.

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