Face coverings, masks, whatever you want to call them, have become a huge part of our "new normal" over the past few months as we all try and do our part to help slow the spread of COVID-19 across the Tri-State. Unfortunately, as the need for masks continues to grow, the supply doesn't always meet the demand, and those who need them the most may not be able to get one due to lack of supply, or lack of funds to purchase one. Fortunately, the Red Cross is able to jump in and provide masks to those who need them in our community, but they could use your help.

According to the Red Cross Indiana Region website, the organization is currently in need of volunteers who have the ability to sew with either a sewing machine, or by hand, to make coverings they can distribute. The best part is they don't need you to be at the Red Cross headquarters on Stockwell Road in Evansville to do it. You can keep yourself safe and help without leaving the house.

Simply download the instructions on how to put the mask together from their website, and put together as many masks as you're comfortable making using "tightly woven cotton, such as quilting fabric or cotton sheets" (they do say t-shirt material will work in a pinch if you don't have the other options available to you), and ship them to the Red Cross when you're done using pre-paid mailing labels they will provide you.

Interested in volunteering, but don't have the materials needed? E-mail Jeff Imel at jeff.imel@redcross.org, and he'll help get you set up.

What if you're interested in helping, but have absolutely no idea how to thread a needle, much less sew fabric together? That's OK too. You can still be part of the process by volunteering to do one or more of the following tasks:

  • Iron
  • Cut out patterns
  • Wash the finished face covers
  • Disinfect and package
  • Pick up face covers from volunteer makers
  • Inventory face covers and deliver them to organizations

Of course the Red Cross is in constant need of blood donations, especially now as the pandemic has put a serious dent in the number of people coming to donate. In the event you'd like to donate, but are a bit concerned about how safe it is in the age of COVID-19, know the Red Cross has safety protocols in place to make the process of donating as safe as possible.

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