Face Masks for Hill Air Force Base
Layton, Utah: Hill Air Force Base announced a partnership with Stand Up USA on March 9, 2020 to launch the Home Base Adopt an Airman Program, which focuses on improving the mental health and well-being of young airmen in the Unites States Air Force by matching the airmen with families in the local community for activities several times a month.
Although the COVID-19 pandemic has postponed the pairing of Airmen with community families, that didn’t stop Stand Up USA from “standing up” and offering to help protect the Hill Air Force Airmen with a grass roots effort to make 20,000 face masks. Stand Up USA initially purchased 600 flat sheets from shopping centers in Davis and Salt Lake Counties, as well as thousands of yards of ribbon.
Since late Tuesday evening, approximately 300 women have been sewing for countless hours, often through the night, in order to deliver almost 5,000 masks on Friday, April 10th, in less than 72 hours! Another 7,000 masks will be delivered on Monday, April 13th. Many of the seamstresses, and their helpful husbands and children, come from the Layton Legacy and Syracuse South Stakes of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Numerous other individuals volunteered after seeing the opportunity on JustServe.org or hearing about the effort via word of mouth.
Michelle Jacobi, Founder of Stand Up USA, said, “We have been so touched by the response we have received from individuals and corporations, spanning from Salt Lake City to Ogden. Once this amazing community heard about the need for 20,000 washable, cotton face masks for the airmen at Hill AFB, we had an endless line of volunteers asking how they could help. Hill AFB does so much for our community, the community couldn't help but try to give back.”
“Some of the industries hit the hardest by COVID 19 have been so generous in their donations,” said Joy Gingrich, co-founder of Stand Up USA. The Taco Times employees in Kaysville and downtown Salt Lake City have volunteered their time and resources to make face masks and collect donations of all cotton material. Employees from Wasatch Peak Family Practice, in Layton, have spent long hours cutting material and sewing face masks, and numerous hotels from Salt Lake City to Layton have donated sheets for the cause.
Dr. Christopher Martin, practicing at Salt Lake Orthopaedic Clinic at St. Mark’s Hospital, heard about the effort and had the ingenuous idea to reach out to hotels for donations. He called Ms. Jacobi and said, "To be effective, the sheets should be tightly woven and layered. Hotels often carry sheets of the highest thread count for durability and softness. My father was in the USAF, and if these masks were going to help him, I'd want them to be of highest caliber and as comfortable as possible.Salt Lake Orthopaedic Clinic can help pick them up - just tell us when and where!" The donations from the numerous hotels (listed below) will lead to the creation of approximately 10,000 additional masks.
“Dozens of calls come in each hour from people willing to donate their time and energy sewing face masks - enough so that we hope to provide another 5,000 - 10,000 face masks by next Friday, April 17th,” says Ms. Jacobi. “The response by our community has reminded us that, even in the midst of a Pandemic, cream still rises to the top, good people will answer the call, hope still prevails and we always stand stronger when we stand together - at least 6 feet apart.”
“Cream of the Crop” Organizations that answered the call:
Layton Legacy Stake, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Syracuse South Stake, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Comfort Inn, Layton
Courtyard by Marriott, Layton
Grand America, Salt Lake City
Hampton Inn, Layton
Hilton Salt Lake City Center
Home 2 Suites, Layton
Little America, Salt Lake City
Marriott Salt Lake City Center
Salt Lake Orthopaedic Clinic at St. Mark's Hospital
Sew N Things, Clearfield, Utah
Taco Time, Kaysville & Salt Lake City
Taiwan Imports, Murray
Wasatch Peak Family Practice, Layton
Various other seamstresses throughout Davis, Salt Lake and Weber Counties