Hope comes in many varieties — not unlike the hundreds of thousands of cloth face masks that individuals, families, sewing circles, businesses and others have donated to Cleveland Clinic through the COVID-19 Community Response Campaign.
“We’re very grateful to the healthcare workers,” says Cathy Watterson, one of 18 mask-makers from Chagrin Falls, Ohio, who teamed up to sew 2,000-plus masks. “We just wanted to do our part to thank them.”
Sports apparel company Fanatics created and donated masks from fabric that otherwise would have been used for Major League Baseball uniforms.
Other organizations pivoted their normal operations to focus on producing masks. Stitches USA rallied its Amish workforce for a “sewing frolic” to crank out tens of thousands of masks. And the Original Mattress Factory converted production lines to produce thousands of masks a day.
“They all leaned in to help in a time of need,” says Renee Kolonick, Cleveland Clinic’s Executive Director of Hospital Operations. “It was amazing to be a part of it.”