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Can you make re-usable face masks?
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Can you make re-usable face masks?

Madame President Josephine Helly has been in discussion with Julie Colclough who works  with a number of national & enterprise support services advisers. They are conducting some research into the viability of producing re-usable face barrier masks for the consumer market in Ireland which they believe might be of interest to ICA members.

The public are now being urged to use face barrier masks in many instances when they are out and about and as a result for many people the wearing of disposable masks will be the only option available to them  – the impact of which will have devastating effect on the environment.

The model that Julie is exploring is the opportunity to mobilise a large group a people across the country with sewing skills who with their combined output have the ability to quickly fulfil the demand for reusable, Irish made, environmentally friendly masks using materials and a design approved and fit for purpose. The fabric would be supplied and delivered to each individual pre-cut to the shape of the mask pattern,  and paid for on a piece rate. The intention is that masks would be affordable and available directly to consumers within 24 hours of ordering via a specialist web shop.

They are therefore reaching out to as many organisations, communities and micro businesses as identified with sewing skills/abilities to try measure the degree of interest and potential output that could be achieved. They believe that 1.5m reusable masks will be required to meet forecasted demand in the first year therefore they need an extensive network of people within this co-operative.

If you would like to get involved, please contact Julie directly on