Sterilisation process of face masks at Fazl Ali College in Mokokchung. The college along with numerous organistions from the district are participating in the Face Mask Campaign Mokokchung. (Morung Photo)
Morung Express News
Mokokchung | May 2
The Mokokchung District Task Force on COVID-19 has launched a Face Mask Campaign, a hundred percent citizen funded campaign, with an aim to stitch and distribute washable masks for all the citizens of Mokokchung district and PPEs for its frontline warriors as a long-term protective measure against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The campaign aims to produce two lakh masks with an estimate cost of Rs 25 lakhs. Volunteers from women departments of various churches, women and youth organizations, women Self Help Groups, mothers and professional tailors have volunteered to make the masks.
The campaign has launched its own website where volunteers can sign up and place orders for materials that are required in making the masks and they can also notify through the website once the masks are ready for delivery.
They have also created a group to build links among all groups who can stitch masks. The group is supported with coordinating material movement, collecting masks, and sharing tutorials on stitching to ensure consistent quality across all the groups.
“The campaign will be successful only when the people come forward to help us. The responses from the people have been very positive and we hope that there will be more. We are primarily looking for material donations like cotton clothes, elastics, laminated clothes etc and we are open to monetary donations against the purchase of materials,” said the Nodal Officer for Face Mask Campaign Mokokchung, Sentilong Ozukum.
“Till now we have received 3,653 finished mask. The total masks received may seem less at the moment because we are in the process of distribution of materials to all volunteers. We are trying to community spread the idea of the campaign and we are hopeful that the numbers will pick up. We now have hundreds of volunteers and SHGs and mothers working tirelessly for the project,” he added.
The finished face masks are collected and transported to Fazl Ali College (FAC) for sterilization and then distributed. The college helps in sterilization of the masks by autoclaving or UV treatment.
“We dry the masks in a hot air oven after which the masks are sorted into packets of 50 and vacuum packaging is done”, said Tia Mollier, Assistant Professor, Deparment of Botany, FAC. “We have vacuum packed more than 3000 masks and we will be able to pack 5000-8000 in a day with four-five persons at work while maintaining social distancing based on our first trail work,” he added.
Speaking to The Morung Express, one of the volunteer from the Women Department of a church said, “During a time when our normal women service were suspended and all our social activities remained canceled or postponed, we were looking for ways and means where our services would be found useful during this pandemic.”
The Face Mask Campaign Mokokchung was an opportunity to serve the people of Mokokchung in their own way. “We hope to someday look back and say we did do something good during that pandemic”.
The Face Mask Campaign Mokokchung uses the hash tag #Iamwithmokokchung and appeals to the people to donate for the cause by visiting their website https://sites.google.com/view/iamwithmokokchung.