Lynda put her skills to use to make over 200 cotton masks

By Maurice Garvey

Covid-19 has laid waste to thousands of hard working small businesses, but it is encouraging to see some have a part to play in helping emergency staff get through this crisis.

Lynda Gorman runs Altered Clothing on Ballyfermot Road and was due to celebrate her 20th anniversary just days before Leo Varadkar’s announcement regarding the closure of “non-essential” businesses.

Altered Clothing compressor

Lynda and daughter Emily

However, with no customers to cater for, Lynda decided to put her skills to good use and has made over 200 free cotton face masks for frontline workers.

 “I thought what could I do with my skills in sewing and have been busy in here on my own every day,” said Lynda.

The Ballyfermot resident has already donated face masks for staff at Our Lady’s Hospital, for members of the ambulance service, and for staff at nursing homes in Chapelizod and Inchicore.

Currently she is making face masks for A&E doctors in Tallaght.

“I know they are not medical grade but Mick Cardiff (St John’s Ambulance) who I’ve known for years, said they are better than the gear they got from China.

“Each staff member got five/six each. Once they can change it for each patient, they can all be washed that night, 100 per cent cotton, as long as it is at 60 degrees.”

Lynda even finds time to make small face masks for little children and teddy bears, with some of the modelling carried out on her social media by daughter Emily.

Face masks for healthcare workers are free but after receiving a number of requests, Lynda is offering to sell masks if there is further demand.

“It has been three weeks without income and no word from the emergency Covid-19 payment. I am still paying electricity and insurance.

“I’d never charge emergency healthcare workers but I have got a small private order on at the moment.”

Lynda admits is was “heartbreaking to close and see all the businesses on this block close down.”

“Some are open 20/25 years, employing local people. If we don’t re-open, I don’t know what I’m going to do. Next week, I’ll redecorate and paint the premises, in the hope that when this is all over, I’ll survive.”

Check Altered Clothing Facebook page for pricing and orders.

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