GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. – Grand Valley seamstresses have stepped up to create thousands of procedural masks for healthcare workers at St. Mary’s Medical Center.
“It’s our duty in the time of crisis to step forward and use the gifts and talents or means that we’ve been blessed with to bless other people,” said Brenna Fowler, one of the hundreds of local seamstresses working to sew thousands of these procedural masks and N-95 mask covers.
Brenna’s husband, Dr. Brent Fowler, works in the Emergency Room at St. Mary’s.
“I am, of course, concerned for his protection, the protection of all the wonderful people working tirelessly for this effort and it was just something small that I could participate in,” said Brenna.
St. Mary’s has distributed over 12,000 mask materials to this network of mostly women.
“Every couple of days they say, ‘Hey we have a shipment of 400 or 1000 or whatever, how many can you take?’ They deliver it to our door, we get sewing and a couple days later somebody comes and picks them up and delivers them to St. Mary’s,” said Brenna.
It’s a simple and easy way to help healthcare workers during this pandemic.
There are people who admittedly aren’t the best seamstresses, but they have a sewing machine and they have some basic skills and they’re doing this, they’re not hard to make, but we also have incredible seamstresses that are zipping right through and getting tons done,” said Brenna.
Incredible seamstresses like Kathy Shipley, another volunteer and owner of “Kathy’s Creations” in Glade Park.
“If you want to learn how to sew this is the way to do it, it’s quick, it’s easy and if you need help contact me, I have extra sewing machines, if they don’t have one, I’ll lend it out,” said Kathy.
Many women have also used this opportunity to teach their children how to sew.
“It’s something that’s connecting us all right now when we can’t be gathering,” said Brenna.
While the mask sewing is connecting us, it’s also providing protection for our healthcare heroes.
“I think that it’s really important for them to feel supported and to feel as though they have the necessary protective equipment,” said Brenna.
“We have to protect the ones who are protecting us, so we got to take care of them, we all have to step in,” said Kathy.
And according to Brenna, the masks are already making an impact.
“My husband said just the other day he got his first mask that our group had stitched and it was kind of cool to see it go full circle and know that what I’m doing here at home is making its way to him there,” said Brenna.
A movement that’s helping and unifying the community.
“We’re all in this together and we’re gonna help each other get through it,” said Brenna.
“It’s amazing, how many can come together and get this done, I love Grand Junction, I love our Glade Park Community,” said Kathy.
If you’re interested in helping out, you can call (970) 298-1954 to get involved.