Donate supplies to help our local hospitals

Photo by Masks4Medicine

WakeMed and UNC Health System — including Rex Hospital in Raleigh — are requesting community donations of masks and other critical supplies, including:

  • hand soap
  • disposable gloves and gowns
  • N95 masks
  • surgical masks
  •  handmade masks
  •  view the complete list here

One of your fellow readers asked us to “find out the specifics regarding types of fabrics and preferred patterns so those of us who are able can start sewing those handmade masks” — and Raleigh, we’ve done just that.

Over the weekend, JOANN Fabric announced a program that will provide fabric, elastic + other necessary materials free of charge for anyone wishing to sew and donate face masks to hospitals (find your nearest location here).

What is the benefit of handmade masks?

N95 respirators — which filter out 95% of particles breathed through them, including bacteria + viruses — are in short supply at our area hospitals. According to the CDC, homemade masks do not qualify as personal protective equipment, but they can be used in a crisis capacity. Learn more here.

What type of fabric can be used?

New fabric only. The hospitals are requesting tightly-woven cotton, of medium or light weight. (Cotton is breathable, durable, and washable.) Pre-washed fabrics are best to avoid shrinkage. Any color or pattern is fine. Two layers are preferred. Material for ties should hold a knot easily and should not stick to hair. Click here for complete instructions, including video.

How can community members donate?

Drop off locations for UNC include the wellness centers at Meadowmont, Cary + Rex, as well as the Health Learning Street in Morrisville. Find the complete list and addresses here. Those wishing to donate supplies of any type to WakeMed should email [email protected] to connect. Duke Health officials have stated supplies are adequate for now — but they are accepting donations of N95 masks, surgical masks + unopened boxes of disposable gloves, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 100 Golden Drive in Durham.