Demand for Masks and Scrub Caps for Healthcare Workers
Outpacing Supply as COVID-19 Restrictions Loosen
Volunteer organization partnering with local research, healthcare and educational institutions to produce Personal Protective Equipment
WINDSOR, ON, May 13, 2020 - The Windsor Essex Sewing Force (WESF) is set to create thousands of homemade masks for staff and patients at Windsor Regional Hospital, Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare, and long-term care facilities.

WESF - a grass-roots volunteer network that provides home-made protective equipment to Windsor-Essex healthcare workers – has partnered with the University of Windsor and St. Clair College to create homemade PPE following evidence-based designs and materials. To date, WESF has supported and facilitated over 10,000 home-made facemasks and scrub caps across Windsor-Essex. “Volunteers are the heart of our network. They are skilled, passionate, caring and above all, committed to donating homemade protective equipment free of charge for healthcare workers” says Kelly Mullen, one of the founding members. “They come from a broad cross section of the community. Many volunteers are from vulnerable groups themselves: seniors, people with disabilities, undergoing treatment for major illnesses, and/or facing economic challenges. What’s common to all is their commitment to keeping frontline healthcare workers safe.”

WESF supports volunteers by providing sewing patterns, coordinating access to supplies, as well as providing transportation of goods when volunteers are unable to leave their homes.
“With demand continuing to grow, we were fortunate to partner with our local educational and healthcare institutions on a WE-SPARK Health Institute project to create a coordinated process while developing cutting edge research” said Rebecca Rudman, another of the founding members. “Our volunteers have been making huge personal investments in time and resources. We now need to raise money so our volunteers don’t have to pay out of their own pocket to buy supplies.”

To learn more about WESF, visit . Donations are being processed by the University of Windsor through their secure site. 100% of the donations will be directed to WESF.
Media Contacts:

Karen Harris

Cathy Mombourquette
WE-SPARK Health Institute
About WE-SPARK Health Institute
WE-SPARK Health Institute is a new strategic partnership that unites health research excellence across Windsor-Essex. A collaboration between the University of Windsor, Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare, St. Clair College and Windsor Regional Hospital, its mission is to enhance the health, well-being and care of people through transformative research and knowledge translation.