Sustainability on My Mind Workshop Series – Tin Can Luminaries

On Wednesday, June 14, 2023, the Sustainable Community Aid Network (SCAN) had its 7th Sustainability On My Mind Workshop. This workshop focused on tin can luminaries and taught residents how to make homemade outdoor decorations using recycled tin cans in their homes. The past workshop was part of the Sustainability on My Mind program, which aims to teach the residents in the low-income neighbourhood of Malton, Mississauga, about eco-friendly lifestyle strategies that households can practice independently for minimal cost.

Participants learned how to make tin can luminaries using recycled tin cans with ice in them, a hammer, a nail, parchment paper and markers for designing and acrylic paint. They drew designs on a piece of parchment paper, affixed it to the can and then used the nail and hammer to poke holes in that design on the can. Once finished, they painted the cans with black acrylic paint and placed a candle or a flameless tea light in the can to see their finished product. Participants were pleased with their final products and made some elaborate designs.

Preparing for the workshop required collecting and cleaning tin cans. We also had to fill them with water and freeze them so the cans maintained their shape while hammered. Besides some help with the cans, SCAN provided all the materials, including a hammer, nails, paint, parchment paper, sandpaper, tape and markers. 

Overall, thanks to Angie Minnick, who helped with the organization and recruitment for the workshop, the workshop was successful, with a great turnout. There were around 20 participants, ranging from children to senior citizens. The demographic makeup of the workshop was diverse, with the registered participants being 33.3% Black, 33.3% South East Asian, 23.8% West Indian and 9.5% South Asian. Attendees left with their final product, an easy-to-do outdoor decoration, and the knowledge of how to recreate this activity. 

This is not the first workshop that has taken place at the Malton Community Centre. In the past, there has been a Mason Jar Herb Garden Workshop and a Food Preservation Workshop. We have an upcoming Sustainability on My Mind workshop.

The Sustainability on My Mind Workshop series is funded by the Community Foundations of Canada, the Community Foundation of Mississauga and The Government of Canada. You can get more information about the workshop on the SCAN website and social media channels or email or call 1800 687 1351 for details about the upcoming workshops or how to support the organization.

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