Combining the talents and enthusiasm of volunteers all across Illinois, Frontline Fabric Masks uses donated supplies to provide masks to those who need them. Join us if you'd like to volunteer to help your community during this time of crisis.
Frontline Fabric Masks (FFM) was formed on March 23, 2020 by Karlene Mondloch of Mundelein and Lisa Dixon of Wauconda who were both inspired to take action because of the shortage of PPE available to area professionals. “Our volunteers know we can’t provide N95 or medical grade protection to the people who need it the most, the ones on the frontline of this battle. But if the fabric masks can extend the life of the N95 masks, we feel that our contribution is invaluable and possibly life saving”, said Lisa. Frontline’s name coincides with their mission to protect our healthcare warriors and was inspired by a Vancouver, Washington mask making group Karlene contacted. “Women can come together and accomplish amazing things in times of need.” said Karlene. She further elaborated on a post that clutched at her heart strings and motivated her to organize the sewers. RN, Kymberli Dawn Barker who posted “ We don’t send our soldiers to war without a Flak jacket......or without a gun. During WWII this country mobilized to help win the war! We built guns! We built tanks! We built airplanes! I am asking you to sew masks! We need them by the thousands.....but if you can only sew one....then by God in heaven.....sew 1! If you can’t sew, you can learn? Or you can buy the materials for someone who can? We all have nothing to do....Let’s do this as a nation! C’mon America 🇺🇸 Let’s do this! Let’s wipe this invader off the 🌎 planet!”
Both women were very active on Facebook community groups and through their shared interest for community involvement, met on a thread where someone was looking for fabric masks. Karlene, who works full time in the wedding industry and part time as a local sewing teacher for the D75 STEAM Foundation, found herself with plenty of time on her hands as a non essential worker. Lisa, a former radiographer, sewing machine dealer and sewing teacher turned full time Nana, also had the time and expertise to launch a full force effort to address and alleviate PPE supply shortages. Each brought teams of enthusiastic volunteers ready to pitch in during this time of need. Lisa explained “We knew we had to support essential personnel by providing fabric masks and reduce exposure in our communities by following CDC guidelines and recommendations to the general public”.
Frontline Fabric Masks is comprised of 300 volunteer sewers, cutters and delivery personnel from Illinois. Some of the organizations they have donated to include Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Lutheran General Hospital, Advocate Condell Hospital in Libertyville, Evanston Hospital Radiology, Chicago Fire Department, Mundelein Police Department, Barbara Bush NICU, and more.