The shortage of medical protective face masks has not helped with slowing the COVID-19 pandemic. To combat forseen shortages in Dominica, designer Alessandra Benjamin, offers a template for constructing suitable face masks and sees the negative economic fallout from the novel coronavirius is an opportunity to rebuild.

Alessandra Benjamin

Benjamin, a member of Rebuild Dominica Inc, provided the following images and quote to be shared with the public. “This is what I used to make the mask sleeve. Very lightweight, plastic covering on one side and sterile cotton on the outside… I am sure there may be a more suitable fabric…but that is what I had and it works really well.”

The spirit of ingenuity is being seen across the globe. In Beijing, fashion designer Kathrin von Rechenberg, created masks due to the shortage of surgical ones due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Her masks are contstructed from ancient tea silk fabric and protect against pollution. Although these silk masks are not advertised as being medical grade, they are ideal for accessorizing surgical face masks.

Engagement in helping to provide a source of face masks allows the opportunity for every Dominican citizen to feel involved and gives our local industry some input in the solution-finding process.

Rebuild Dominica Inc has shared this update from Benjamin with the President of Dominica via his secretary and have been assured that this important resource will be reviewed. Upon the release of a  national update, local textile workers can begin to use the template to produce masks on-island.