As a response to Covid-19 and the widespread lack of PPE, Create Oldham set up a project creating visors to protect our frontline workers.
To achieve such a large-scale project, Create started recruiting volunteers. A Visor Volunteers page was set up and the word went out to social media sites. In a short space of time, people from in and around Oldham came forward pledging to give up their time to be a part of this project.
David, a volunteer making 3D printer prusa components, explained that he got involved because “I owe the NHS more than I could ever possibly repay. Over 30 years of severe illness, I’ve seen them work wonders on myself and others, from care to surgery, psychological support and more. At the very least, I can provide them with some protective gear to help them carry on their monumental work.”
Fuchsia, a volunteer sourcing buttonhole elastics, explained that the project “helps my mental health and to feel like I’m doing something about the current situation. If we can keep our key workers safe, then it should have a knock-on effect of protecting many more members of the local community.”
All visors are to be given free of charge which meant there were initial issues surrounding sourcing and paying for materials. However, communities responded, and people began scanning their households for materials. Crompton House and Wild Bank Community School donated several boxes of acrylic sheets, IKEA donated 300 istad bags and Gallery Oldham donated 300 aprons.
A Crowd Funder was set up for donations and in a few weeks, the £2000 mark was hit.
There are currently three production lines running; the first is working on creating 300 visors for the Critical Care ward of the Royal Oldham Hospital, the second is creating a quicker, more light-weight visor used for community use to protect our Care Homes and Emergency Services, and the third is creating mask bands to relieve the pressure on the ears from sustained usage.
Although initial targets still stand, the fight against coronavirus continues, and Create Oldham intends to continue helping wherever they are needed. There have already been numerous requests from services across Oldham who are working without the protection they need.
In order to continue our help, more donations are vital.
“These things are easier when networked and the fundraiser makes things more affordable than doing it out of my own pocket. I’ve had most of my days taken up from messages from health workers all over the country asking for help. There’s only a limited amount you can do on your own, so teaming up makes more sense and gets PPE to people faster.” – Ben, a volunteer making face shields.
“I was horrified to discover the local healthcare professionals are so lacking in protective equipment. Anything to help!” – Tony, printing the prusa visors and laser cutting acetate sheets and verkstan visors.
“I got involved because I wanted to help out but would not be able to spare the time volunteering for the NHS as I work full-time. Once I heard I could use my 3D printer to support this project, I was very happy to get involved. It is nice to be able to use the kit I have, knowing it is helping people.” – Nathan, using his 3D printer to make the top and bottom parts of the face shields.
A big thanks to Action Together providing a grant, all our incredible volunteers and everyone going out of their way to source materials and provide donations.
To stop this virus, we need collaboration.
Sign up to be a volunteer:
Please email visor requests to: [email protected]