Gazette launches a face mask initiative - expect to distribute 2500 with the help of mask makers and community groups

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

April 27th, 2020



Bolts of cloth

Bolts and bolts of cloth – being put to good use.

It began with a comment from a friend who knew that we had a lot of cotton cloth – and a number of different sewing machines in the basement.

Why don’t you make masks and give them away?

So we did.

Caremonger pieceWe reached out to Burlington CareMongers and asked if there were people who could make masks if the cloth was provided. We had ten positive responses before the day was out.

It just built from there.

What kind of masks: the tie type of masks or with elastic?

Many people said elastic could get quite uncomfortable – so we opted for tie type masks.

Jan at sewing machine

Four ties per mask – 2000 masks – you do the math.

That meant we also had to make the ties.

We decided that we would make the ties and pass those along with the cloth and have the sewers do the assembly.

Someone had to do the organizing.

That’s when Connie Price came through – Big Time. She has undertaken the supervising of the sewers – getting material to them and following their output.

We then had to get the completed product from the mask makers. The Burlington Kinsman stood up and took on that task.

They will pick up the completed product,  quarantine the bags for 72 hours and then deliver it to the people who will hand it out to the public.

The Burlington Community Seniors put up a bit of cash to cover the small expenses.

Then there has to be a location where the completed masks could be delivered; then inspected, then placed in plain brown envelopes and quarantined for 72 hours then handed over to the Burlington Lions Club who will deliver the ready to use masks to the organizations that were going to do the final distribution.

Face Mask Sign

First batch of the masks being given out at St Matthews Anglican Church

The was like creating, instructing and communicating with a small army.

So far it is working.

The first batch of 100 masks was delivered to Connie Price a few days ago.  She is handing them out to people who drop off food at St Matthews Anglican Church. Part of that first shipment went to the Food Bank.

Councillor Stolte (ward 4) is working with the Caremongers to find volunteer sewers who are perhaps not on Facebook.



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