Volunteers sew thousands of face masks - FOX34 Lubbock

Volunteers sew thousands of face masks

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

"I didn't know anyone prior to this. They are all just volunteers from the Lubbock community that have joined up and so selflessly given up their time and energy and skills to sew the face masks," Tiffany Edwards, organizer of Face Masks for Lubbock, said.

The group, is an army of volunteers nearly 1,600 strong.

Seamstresses, both novice and veteran, are given face masks kits with enough material to make 10 to 20 masks.

Edwards is a nurse herself.

"We currently have 7,000 requests from all over Lubbock county," Edwards said. 

So far, they have completed 3,500.

Edwards says it wouldn't be possible without the help of Lubbock businesses.

"Unity and Glass help us cut down our panels that are used for the face masks. And then The Slate Group also helps us cut our strips, which are used to make the ties on the face masks," Edwards explained.

Donations of fabric and string also "tie" together the team's work.

"First Baptist Church here in Lubbock bought out our entire amazon wish list at one point that helped our group get started," Edwards said. 

Cloth masks aren't the same as PPE, but can still be useful to healthcare workers in the fight against COVID-19.

"A lot of them are using to put over their N-95 masks to prolong the life of them," Edwards said.

The group mostly fulfills orders for frontline healthcare and other essential workers, but experts recommend everyone needs something to cover their face while in public.

"I encourage you as we continue to relax our current standing order, social distancing and opening up stores in Lubbock... let me strongly encourage you to wear some kind of facial covering," Dr. Ron Cook, the city's health expert, said. "It's not to protect me from getting infected, as much as it's to protect me from giving the infection to somebody else."

"It does help to remind you to not touch your face as much, which reduces the transmission of the virus."

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