By Max Bowenfirstname.lastname@example.org
As hospitals around the country put out a call for Personal Protective Equipment [PPE], many organizations are responding to help however they can.
One of these is SewHopeSNE, which stands for Southern New England. Started only a week ago through a Facebook group, this group of experienced craft-makers has made over 1,000 masks, 400 of which have been delivered. They are sewing masks for area hospitals (Lifespan and Care New England) using their fabric and specifications, as well as the RI Coalition for the Homeless, Sturdy Memorial and other organizations.
Jeanelle Dejager-Paul started the group after seeing a callout for masks and contacted the Lifespan Hospital Group to see how they could help. She said there are around 560 members, some who make masks, and others who joined to offer moral support. Her friend Dawn Kerr sewed the first prototype mask for the group and has been her partner in this organization.
“It’s been phenomenal,” she said. “Other organizations have contacted me wanting masks for their group.”
Dejager-Paul said that the hospitals have provided specifications on how the masks are made. While getting the exact materials needed isn’t always possible, the crafters make adjustments, such as using ribbons or ties in the place of elastics. More materials are needed, or people can join the group to cheer on the crafters.
“It’s very heartening to see that,” she said.