When Wanda Boyd returned to her hometown in 2016, she wanted to give back to her community.
One of the ways she has given back is via her talent for sewing. In recent years, she has donated quilts to the Warrior Project and to the Carriage House Players, which were used as fundraisers for the organizations.
As the owner of Wanda’s Creations, located at 6 Pooh Lane, off Highland Rim Road, she has been teaching sewing classes on Monday evenings.
When asked if she would be making face masks, she decided to reach out to Lincoln County Mayor Bill Newman to ask if face masks were needed. She made two samples and received orders from both Lincoln County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) and Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department.
“We’re not charging – it’s a total donation,” Wanda said.
She has turned away orders from other individuals who have asked to purchase the masks.
Because of the current limit on gatherings, she has called off her classes, but a few ladies will donate their time to go to the sewing center at staggered times and sew masks using their own machines.
Wanda supplies the fabric and materials. The exterior of the mask is a tight woven cotton, and the inside lining is made of a breathable flannel. The ladies are producing a total of 135 for EMA, and the sheriff’s department has ordered 91 masks. Wanda sews about three hours every day.
While she admits she doesn’t know the level of protection they provide, and they are not medically certified, she says they can feel better about being around people with a barrier.
Boyd praised the agencies and said, “They’re there to help us all.”
Most of the masks have already been delivered.
Given the present shortages of medical grade protective gear during the pandemic, this may be the best option.
N95 respirators adhere to strict protocols to block out airborne particles like viruses. Medical grade respirators are in short supply and should be reserved for healthcare workers on the frontlines.
Additional information about respirators is available on the CDC’s website.