Our very first project took place as we were starting to get TIES up and running in the first few months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Not an education project, but one that met a very urgent need!
When the pandemic first hit there was a huge shortage of PPE, not even enough for frontline workers. Masks for the general public were expensive when they were available at all. So a culture of homemade mask making erupted. We read an article in the local paper about one such woman. When we picked up some masks from Susan she had a big sign up asking if anyone had any elastic to donate. Turns out that not only was there a worldwide shortage of masks, there was also no elastic available anywhere in Canada or the US for homemade mask makers to make their own! And so an idea was born. We imported and donated a couple of rolls of elastic to Susan and went from there.
Over the next few months we bought and donated a lot more elastic; nearly 1.5 kilometres of the stuff! More than Susan could use, and more than another 3 or 4 local volunteers could use too. So we supported a couple of larger groups in the Greater Vancouver area: Protect Frontline Workers and Vancouver Makers for Emergency Response and Support.
Fortunately, medical masks are no longer in short supply, and elastic is widely available once more, so this project has ended. Our focus has returned to education projects in developing countries.
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It’s too late to contribute to this project but any donation made at our Donate page will go to one of our other initiatives. If you would like to find out about our current projects before donating, please visit our Projects page.
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