On March 13, along with so many other businesses, alternew postponed its launch. Days later, founder Nancy Rhodes, alternew founder and Chief Sewing Officer Isabel Varela, found themselves in a unique position to provide PPE to front line providers. Their call to action was immediately answered and on March 26th, they sent out 450 yards of cotton fabric and 4500 yards of elastic to 45 sewers. Thousands of yards of materials later, hundreds of sewers, daily and weekly drives to pick up and drop off masks and materials and they hit and surpassed their goal of making 35,000 masks for frontline providers, health organizations, immunocompromised, and marginalized communities.
Some sewers made 20 masks while others made 1,000. Some drivers volunteered once while others made weekly or daily runs. Some donors gave $10 and others gave $600. And they never would have achieved their goal without each and every one of them!
Inspiring doesn’t even begin to describe the community built, the new friends made, and the willingness of individuals to come together in times of crisis. It truly shows that there is no task too small to make a big impact.