This is intended to be a team project within each participating county between AgriLife Extension, TEEA, 4-H and Healthy Texas (and any other interested Extension volunteers). FCH and/or Health agents are asked to provide leadership for coordinating the project within your county – bringing volunteers together via phone/electronic means (recognizing many TEEA members may not have electronic capability), distributing instructions, accepting finished product, and shipping/delivering finished product. Some of these tasks may be assigned to volunteers who do not sew and are not in COVID-19 high risk groups. This is an optional activity and the decision to participate or not should be made based on your county situation and the status of the disaster in your county. Whatever the decision., emphasis should be placed on following appropriate non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs).
Mask Construction Instructions:
Two face mask patterns are available – one with elastic and one with ties; and one Youth size:
A video demonstration is available at https://youtu.be/VgHrnS6n4iA Use prewashed 100% cotton (with or without a layer of fusible interfacing). When possible, please use non-scented laundry detergent and no fabric softener when prewashing fabric.
- If you are responding to a local request for face masks, your sewing instructions should be adapted to specific needs and requirements of the facility or person making the request.
- To best comply with social distancing, individuals should work independently to make items. There should be no in person meetings or ‘sewing sessions.’
- A system of collecting finished items that maintains recommended social distancing and disinfection protocols (for packaging, not items) will be needed. This could include having materials available for pickup in vestibules, on porches, or outside office doors. Disinfection protocols include washing hands or using hand sanitizer after picking up product, wearing gloves, etc.
- Some volunteers in high risk categories may need other volunteers to deliver materials for sewing and pick up finished items. Pick-up and delivery could be jobs for volunteers who do not sew and are not in COVID-19 high risk groups.
- One of the conditions to this project is that people maintain social distancing. Face to face contact can be eliminated by mailing patterns (if people don’t have the means to print their own), volunteers should order/obtain their own fabric and supplies (online and shipped to them – agents or volunteers should not shop for anyone), people can use supplies they have on hand. If that is not possible for some of them, then they shouldn’t participate. A drop off location can be identified where people can drop off finished items without interacting with anyone. Finished items can be placed on a porch for pickup rather than handing them to someone. If there are no volunteers in the non-high risk category willing to pick up finished face masks in a way that limits face to face contact, then participation may not be possible.
We have identified several options for distributing finished product. Please use the following Google form when distributing completed maskshttps://forms.gle/UBp6LteJPRRyeQct9
- We have been contacted by Dr. Tom Fisher, an oncologist with Texas Oncology, who is willing to accept ALL masks that we can produce. There are 2 options for getting completed masks to Texas Oncology.
- You can deliver the masks to one of their 210 Cancer Centers across the state. To locate the nearest facility, go to https://www.texasoncology.com/cancer-centers-search-results, select the nearest city and hit Search. Locations in that city will be provided. Nurse Managers have been alerted that they may be contacted about delivering masks. They can provide more specific instructions for delivery.
- If there is no site within a reasonable distance or you have no way to deliver the masks directly to a Cancer Center, you can ship all of your completed masks to the following central location and Texas Oncology will distribute them statewide:
Director of Nursing Services
10408 Barbuda Trail
Keller, TX 76244
4. Additional sites for donating masks:
a. The following members of the Texas Association of Charitable Clinics are interested in receiving masks
- Health for All in Bryan
Contact Liz Dickey: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Hill County Mission for Health in Boerne, TX
Contact Mary Cortez: Mary@missionforhealth.org
- GRACE Community Clinic, Grapevine
Contact person is Shirley Roberts: email@example.com
Address: 837 E. Walnut Street, Grapevine, 76051
- HOPE Clinic McKinney –
- Check with your local health care facilities to see if they will accept homemade masks. This could include hospitals, clinics, cancer centers, medical offices, long term care facilities, etc. You may want to meet any local needs rather than participate in Dr. Fisher’s challenge.
- Joann Fabrics is serving as a drop off point for completed masks. You can drop off completed items at your local store.
IN COUNTIES WHERE THERE ARE SHELTER-IN-PLACE ORDERS or other local restrictions, this project is NOT considered to be essential. Therefore, people should not be leaving their homes to pick up supplies or finished masks or to drop off completed masks. In these counties you have several options:
- Make the decision to NOT participate. This should be communicated to your volunteers and 4-H families.
- Advise your volunteers to keep their completed items and turn them in only after Shelter-in-Place or other restrictions have been lifted. Everyone should be abiding by local guidelines for movement outside their homes. These items will still be needed in the weeks ahead.
- If you have volunteers with sizable quantities for donation to Texas Oncology, it is possible for you to assist them in creating a FedEx shipping label to affix to their package and schedule a FedEx pickup of the package at their home. Please limit this to shipments of 50 or more face masks. Use the Texas Oncology FedEx account number provided above. Contact Dr. Joyce Cavanagh if you need assistance with this. If you use this option, have your volunteers provide you with the information needed to complete the Google Form https://forms.gle/UBp6LteJPRRyeQct9 and to include in your monthly reports. DEADLINE EXTENDED until APRIL 24! All masks submitted to Texas Oncology (delivered to a local clinic or shipped to the Keller address) by April 24, will count toward the cash awards.
Reporting: This project will provide an opportunity to measure statewide impact!
- Enter ALL shipments or deliveries into the Google Form athttps://forms.gle/UBp6LteJPRRyeQct9 regardless of where they are donated.
- Remember to report this effort using ‘COVID 19 AgriLife Operation Face Mask Project.’
- Include the following in your Texas Data narrative:
- Include COVID 19 in your narrative
- Number of volunteers participating
- Number of hours contributed (use an average of 15 minutes for each completed item; include number of hours contributed by volunteers doing non-construction tasks like pick-up and delivery)
- Value of donated materials ($20 for every 15 completed adult masks and $20 for every 18 completed children’s masks)
- Volunteer groups who participated in your county