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Sew you want to help? Here's how

Johnson City Press • Updated Mar 26, 2020 at 3:26 PM

With many in our communities and around the nation confining themselves to home as their way of trying to stop the spread of COVID-19, some have discovered that home confinement opens new opportunities to fulfillment, especially when we help others. If you can sew, and can teach others in the family to sew, you can work together to help with an urgent need in the war against COVID-19.

The global pipeline for medical supplies is most heavily strained by demand for face masks. Tens of thousands of medical professionals around the world are putting themselves at risk every day because there are not enough medical-grade masks to protect them as they treat the sick. Those masks cannot be created at home, but lower-grade masks can and you can help. Masks sewn by the public are worn by the sick to help stop distribution of the virus to the doctors and nurses caring for them. To make them you must meet several requirements. The masks must be:

• Constructed in a clean environment without smoke residue or pet hair.

• Created from fabric that is clean and washed in hot water before being sewn.

• Includes two 8-inch squares of woven cotton fabric and a mid-weight non-woven fusible interfacing fabric, as well as bindings, a metal wire for the nose structure and elastic ear loops.

• Made from new, tightly woven fabrics, such as quilting cotton, cotton and cotton-blend poplin.

How to make them? Ballad Health provides full instructions here: https://tinyurl.com/vpdohe2. Your completed masks may be mailed to Ballad Health’s auxiliary/volunteer services department at Professional Park No. 1, Suite 16; Johnson City, TN 37604. All donations should be sent in a clean plastic bag.

Or, you may drop them off at these locations:

• Bristol, Tenn.: 2686 W. State St.; open Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

• Elizabethton: 14497 W. Elk Ave., Suite 11; open Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m.-6 p.m.

• Johnson City: 378 Marketplace Blvd., Suite 5; open Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

• Kingsport: 111 W. Stone Drive, Suite 110; open Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

• Kingsport: 4600 Fort Henry Drive; open Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m.-6 p.m.

• Norton, Va.: 601 Commonwealth Drive; open Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

• Pennington Gap, Va.: 127 Healthcare Drive, Suite 3; open Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

• Rogersville: 405 Scenic Drive; open Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Thanks for helping to make a difference.

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