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Local women work to unite local sewers to make medical masks

Local women work to unite local sewers to make medical masks
March 26
02:15 2020

600-plus masks requested by local medical facilities

Melissa Vickers, Katie Sonnen Lee and Marissa Joyce were three friends united with a desire to help during the COVID-19 outbreak. Inspired by a Facebook post shared by Katie Sonnen Lee, the three decided to see if there was a local demand for fabric masks. They quickly found out the demand was overwhelming, and issued an online plea for other locals to help. 

“In a time of social distancing, I have never felt so connected with my community. I am hearing from old friends, new friends and strangers who are all asking how they can help,” says Melissa Vickers, project organizer. 

The mask, made with two layers of fabric and elastic straps, is a simple design, and has been approved by local medical facilities to use in situations where an N95 mask is not warranted. In just three days, there have been requests for 600 masks and counting. 

Dozens of local people have volunteered to help with the mask project, and are doing things such as buying flannel, cotton, and elastic, cutting fabric to size, washing and drying the material, and sewing the masks. Several houses have been set up around town as front porch ‘delivery sites’ for finished masks. 

“We have been surprised and overwhelmed by the demand for these masks in our community,” says Marissa Joyce, one of the project organizers. “It feels great to feel as if there is something we can do to be a concrete help to the heroes in the medical field who are on the front lines of this epidemic.” 

The mask uses simple materials, one layer of quilter’s cotton, one layer of cotton flannel, and elastic straps. It can be washed and dried and used multiple times.

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