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Free mask making material

Hospital requests help

Kim Fundingsland/MDN Jo-Ann Fabrics and Crafts is donating pre-cut fabric for the purpose of making face masks to help combat the coronavirus pandemic. People are asked to pick up the material, sew masks and return them to the store for distribution.

Earlier this week Trinity Health asked for community assistance in acquiring surgical masks or N95 respirator masks to help defend against expected shortages. The request also asked for volunteers to sew simple surgical masks. The need for masks has risen rapidly during the current coronavirus pandemic.

Trinity Health Vice President Randy Schwan said, “As the number of COVID-19 cases rise, we’ll be facing a shortage of supplies in the coming days and weeks.”

Jo-Ann Fabrics and Crafts, 1015 South Broadway, has put together kits of pre-cut material that can be used to sew masks. The kits are free.

“We have a cart full of pre-cut fabrics for people to come in and take, make masks and bring them back,” said Kyrsten St. John of Jo-Ann Fabrics. “A lot of people are doing it. The instructions are in the bag with the fabric.”

Elastic is sometimes used to secure the masks but is also in short supply at certain locations. Ribbon can be used to tie the masks if elastic is unavailable.

“We are grateful to all our friends and neighbors who have reached out to provide assistance and donate supplies,” said Schwan.

Schwan had praise for local crafters willing to sew masks. Donors are asked to email their information to Ward County Emergency Manager Jenn Wiechmann at Jennifer.wiechmann@wardnd.com.

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