“It’s a simple solution to a big problem.”
Winter in Syria can be cold. Freezing cold.
With over 11 million people displaced since the beginning of the country’s civil war in 2011, many millions are without adequate heating or shelter during the cold winter months. A group of MIT students has set out to change that.
The team of six, led by MIT Sloan School of Management undergraduate Vick Liu, created TravlerPack, a light, durable, water-resistant sleeping bag that can withstand temperatures as cold as -10 degrees Celsius, with the goal of distributing them to Syrian refugees.
TravlerPack started as an idea scribbled on a napkin. During a freshman pre-orientation exercise last year, Liu was among a group of students discussing startup ideas when he realized he was interested in creating something that would help people. He wrote the idea for TravlerPack on a napkin and stuffed it in his pocket so he wouldn’t forget it.
“TravlerPack was a natural transition for me, since I went backpacking and camping growing up,” said Liu. “The refugee crisis is a huge problem, and I have experience with something that could really help people.”
With fuel and shelter hard to come by, refugees have few ways to keep warm during the Syrian winters. But a sleeping bag doesn’t require a battery or fuel. “It’s a simple…
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