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Making a homemade mask to support healthcare workers

Posted at 7:44 PM, Mar 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-24 01:42:25-04

(NBC 26) - Healthcare workers on the front lines of the pandemic need your help. They're facing a mask shortage which are needed to do their jobs. Now, there's a way you can support them!

"I think I've made about 148 so far," said Carol Bruess of De Pere.

"So far we've made about 100; I lost count, I keep stuffing them in bags," added Kathleen Barlament of Oconto.

While you don't need to be a professional seamstress, these ladies say any little bit can help! Whether it's just cutting up fabric or trying your hand at it, they say it's all hands on deck.

"If you had time to worry, if you have time to complain, you have time to serve," Bruess added. "So whatever we can do, each of us, we need to be doing it, and this is something I can do here."

"If they have a shortage, you need to protect your first-line workers, your healthcare workers, you need to protect your first responders, anybody in assisted living or a nursing home," Kathleen said. "If they can't use them for doctors they can use them for the patients."

While the masks are homemade, they will still help protect healthcare workers from breathing in the virus. Barlament said she's been using non-woven polyester or knit polyester iron on interfacing.

"The non-woven polyester catches viruses, cotton does not," Barlament said.

Both women have been donating their masks to local healthcare workers, or friends and family who work within the community and need them.

Bruess said they just started a Masks for Green Bay Facebook page for people interested in helping out. You can find the dimension and fabric requirements on the site. The Volunteer Center of Brown County is also taking in donated masks.