On Thursday, March 18, Linda Lentz, the President of the Quail Creek Quilt Covey, received a phone call from Tina Spiridon, the Nursing Director at the Santa Cruz Valley Regional Hospital. She asked whether the Quilt Covey would be willing to make face masks for healthcare workers. She emphasized the need for three layers of fabric. The masks would not be used by healthcare workers interacting with COVID-19 patients, but by doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers with other patients in the hospital.
Understanding the significance of the project, Linda invited Needleworks to join the Quilt Covey in making masks. That evening, emails were sent out describing the request, providing a pattern and instructions for making the masks. Linda Lentz and Betsy Miller, the secretary of the Quilt Covey, headed the effort for the Quilt Covey and its 80 members, and Barbara Fryan and Darlene Tobias headed the effort for Needleworks and its 45 members.
The women of the Quilt Covey and Needleworks got to work. They searched their stashes of fabric for bright and beautiful cottons. They looked for elastic to secure the masks, and when that no longer could be found in stores, they improvised and found other ways to create ties for the masks. They practiced social distancing, not gathering in their shared studio in the Creative Arts Building, but working in their individual homes. Betsy sent emails updating new ideas for constructing the masks and sharing information about supplies. Linda kept a box on her front porch with extra supplies, and a box for completed masks. When an article appeared in the Green Valley News, other Quail Creek residents offered to help and have either been sewing or donating supplies.
On March 23, Linda delivered 200 face masks to the Santa Cruz Valley Hospital. An additional 56 masks went to family members in the medical profession. Many other members sent masks to friends and relatives.
That’s not the end of the story, though. Residents of the Quail Creek community continued to donate material, grosgrain ribbon for ties, elastic, and more. Women across Quail Creek continue to make masks for family, friends, and, of course, for healthcare workers. Next Monday, another donation of masks will be made to the hospital and donated to other medical facilities. What a wonderful story of the Quail Creek community in action!