Message from Dr. Jeff Powis, Medical Director, Infection Prevention & Control, Associate Medical Director, Antimicrobial Stewardship Program, Michael Garron Hospital, Toronto East Health Network
With the current pandemic there is a worldwide shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE).
To keep our community healthy and safe, Michael Garron Hospital is issuing a challenge to all east end sewists to collectively make 1,000 masks a week. We want to see all east enders wearing a fabric mask when they need to be within six feet of other people, especially vulnerable populations and the elderly.
It will be everyone's responsibility to keep their mask clean. We recommend washing masks daily with hot water and laundry detergent.
How to make your masks
We are promoting a simple 2-ply, pleated mask design. Along with standard sewing supplies (sewing machine, measuring tape, etc.), you will need:
- dark-coloured polyester fabric for the outside of the mask (this could be substituted with 100% cotton if polyester is not available)
- light-coloured 100% cotton for the part of the mask that goes against the skin
Please use clean fabric to make your masks. We will also be sanitizing all donated masks at the hospital.
Share your creations on social media! Tag us @mghfoundation and tag your post with #MGH1000masks
- Who will be given these masks?
- Hospital healthcare providers will not use these masks. They have certified masks that they are required to wear.
- All approved visitors who enter Michael Garron Hospital
- All of our discharged patients as they reintegrate into the community
- We also plan to distribute to our broader community to help prevent disease transmission
- Where and when can I drop off my completed masks?
Thank you so much for helping to keep our community safe and healthy!
Please put your sewn masks in a plastic bag with your contact information (name, address, email address and phone number). Providing your contact information is optional and will be used by the Michael Garron Hospital Foundation to thank you for participating in the MGH Mask Challenge and share updates.
The masks can be dropped off in the Coxwell lobby of Michael Garron Hospital between 8:00AM – 4:00PM Monday to Friday. Michael Garron Hospital is located at 825 Coxwell Avenue, Toronto, Ontario.
Social/Physical Distancing best practices will be adhered to during drop off.
- I'm far away. Can I mail them in?
Yes! You can send them to:
Michael Garron Hospital
825 Coxwell Ave
Toronto, ON M4C 3E7
- I'm in isolation after travel, etc. Can I still make masks?
Yes! We will be sanitizing all masks at the hospital when we receive them.
- I don't have elastics. Can I use fabric ties?
Yes, you can absolutely replace the elastics in the pattern with fabric ties.
- Why are you recommending the light/dark fabric combination? What if I don't have light/dark fabric?
That's okay! We'll still accept masks made with any colour combination or patterns - just do your best. We are recommending dark fabric for the exterior to help with light absorption.
- I'm using a different pattern. Is that okay?
Yes! We just ask that you try to follow the fabric guidelines (dark outer fabric with light inner fabric, cotton or polyester or a blend).
- Aren't all non-essential businesses closed? Where can I find fabric and sewing supplies right now?
In many cases you can still shop online! For a local option, try Fabric Spark (located on Danforth near Woodbine).
- I have another question - who do I contact?
If you have any other questions, please contact Rosemary Quinlan at @email.
Thank you for doing your part to keep everyone safe in our community. We can't wait to share the results of our challenge with you!