So what have you been doing in lockdown?
It’s a good question isn’t it?
I know people who have been cleaning their kitchen cupboards, or cleaning their house until there’s nothing left to clean. Frankly, I’d have to be pretty desperate to do any of that but when we did go into lockdown I briefly flirted with the idea of painting the dining room, and even cleaning my car. Yes, I would make a list of all those jobs that I’d been meaning to do but had always found something more interesting to divert my attention.
However, things took a bit of a different turn for me a couple of weeks after being confined to the house. I’m lucky enough to still be in full time employment with the SCQF Partnership, and was pretty busy working from home on different projects, as well as planning for the coming year.
Demand for Visors
Just before Easter I had a chance conversation with a friend in the NHS based in Glasgow. He was busy designing high quality, re-useable visors for frontline staff in Glasgow who were fighting the Coronavirus pandemic and his one 3D printer could not produce enough to meet the huge demand - which was worrying.
Because we’re a small team with a big remit at the SCQF Partnership, we’re lucky to have some excellent partners who have networks right across Scotland. I therefore offered to write a brief, and send this to a few of these partners with a request to share across their networks, to see if we could involve a few more people.
Our partners were very happy to do this and the response we received was phenomenal. The request went viral and people from all over the UK offered to help from large businesses to individuals with 3D printers at home. The team at NHS Glasgow couldn’t cope with the demand, and so I, and others began to answer some of the hundreds of e-mails sending out the files required so folk could get started on making visors.
Aim to produce around 10,000 reusable, environmentally friendly visors
We’re now at the stage where we have around 1200 visors produced but are extending our work to be able to supply other hospitals across Scotland, as well as GP practices, care homes, and care workers in the community. We have also partnered with a group called Covid Safety Network who are co-ordinating production, collection and delivery of visors. Our aim is to produce around 10,000 re-useable, environmentally friendly visors.
Call for funding support
The challenge we now have though is funding. Most of our volunteers are providing the cost of materials out of their own pocket and in order for them to continue producing visors we need to be able to purchase the materials on their behalf as well as finance the co-ordination of such a major operation.
Covid Safety Network has therefore set up a crowdfunding page and is looking for help to share this as widely as possible.
The page tells you everything you need to know about our work and we would be grateful for any help you are able to give whether that be sharing the link or contributing to this valuable work. There’s still a lot to do to protect staff and our elderly/vulnerable and we can’t stop yet.
Needless to say, the dining room remains unpainted and the car is not looking too great either………
Thanks go to Rachel Grant at Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, Matt Lancashire at SCDI, Wendy Grindle at College Development Network and Siobhan Jordan at Interface for their support in sharing our initial request. Thanks also to our CEO, Aileen Ponton, for allowing me to use work time in which to do this.