Sew Face Masks Philadelphia is a Philadelphia Area (including South Jersey) grassroots community organization, established mid March 2020 as a mutual aid effort, directly in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Our mission in 2020, when there was no access to medical-grade PPE, was to provide free homemade reusable face masks to anyone who requests them, as well as proactively target harder-hit zip codes. We support essential workers, health care providers, volunteer groups, community organizations, city agencies, non profits, supported living, schools and child care facilities, senior living, faith based groups, and families in need.
We are also committed to providing up-to-date, science-based safety, wear and care information related to optimize fit and promote donning and cleaning, as well as analyze the latest research in this area.
In order to avoid disrupting scarce disposable medical-grade Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) supply chain -- we assisted by mobilizing and empowering the home sewing community to cut, sew, and distribute makeshift PPE for general community use in order to protect each other locally. Our team vetted requests and provided delivery instructions, or arranged for pick-up. Our masks often had nose wires and ties which ensured an airtight seal, and also often had a filter pocket or were designed to be worn over disposable procedure masks in order to extend their life and improve their fit.
Since our creation, we have also been strong advocates for the #Masks4All movement and believe that, when in public settings, every individual should wear a face mask to reduce community spread and exhaled aerosols, particularly at a time when testing was scarce, results lagged in days, and vaccine was not yet available.
We continue to advocate for and support improving indoor air quality, the use of PPE where appropriate, particularly in crowded indoor gatherings, and essential locations such as pharmacies and transit, where people of various ages, vaccine eligibility, health conditions, and active infection may interact.
Let's join together in being a part of the solution. By the community, for the community.
#Masks4All #MaskUpPHL #ZeroWaste #IAQ
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