Hundreds of Patriotic ‘Rosies’ Nationwide Answer the AIS Sew the Masks Call to Action
More than 500 sewing enthusiasts from 40 states sign up to pitch in
Washable and reusable facemasks created for essential workers and others at risk;
Backed by AIS and corporate sponsors
Over 500 sewing enthusiasts across America have answered the call from Massachusetts-based AIS to help create up to one million high-quality facemasks for essential personnel and people in their communities at high risk of COVID-19.
The Sew the Masks program – in just a few weeks’ time – has recruited more than 500 talented sewers from 40 states to use material kits donated by AIS and other corporate sponsors to create high-quality, reusable cloth masks designed and developed on the AIS manufacturing floor in Leominster, MA.
The nationwide effort is ramping up as a new surge of COVID-19 cases has emerged in the south and southwestern parts of the U.S., while states such as California and New York have curbed some reopening plans. The CDC has re-emphasized the importance of face masks to slow transmission and infection of the virus. Approximately 10,000 masks have been created and donated to date.
“The response to “Sew the Masks” has been overwhelming and a real testament to the commitment people have to helping their communities be safe and be part of the solution,” said Bruce Platzman, CEO of AIS. “Our patriotic ‘Rosies’ come from all walks of life and from all over the United States, and they are dedicated to helping fellow Americans. They are enabling a much larger effort to create high-quality, comfortable and reusable masks than would otherwise be possible. We are grateful for them and the growing number of corporate sponsors who are joining this effort to support the communities in which they live and work.”
The Sew the Mask program consists of four steps:
- Volunteer sewing enthusiasts – “Rosies” – request a kit of materials for the creation of 50 masks at sewthemasks.com.
- These kits ship directly from AIS with easy-to-follow instructions, precut materials and return packaging.
- Completed masks are returned in the provided packaging to AIS within 25-30 days.
- AIS performs a quality check on every completed mask, and then ships boxes of masks to corporate sponsors and partners for distribution and donation within their own communities.
“I have been sewing and quilting all my life. Now, being a part of the team at the “Sew the Masks” project at AIS, I truly enjoy helping out in a significant way,” said Kathie Peloquin, a local volunteer ‘Rosie’ from Leominster, Mass. that has helped make or repair hundreds of masks to date as part of the program.
AIS allocated a production line of its employees in early April on the manufacturing floor to make high-quality reusable masks using antimicrobial fabric for the covers and a non-treated, comfortable inner layer filter of nonwoven polypropylene. AIS masks are already helping protect healthcare workers, first responders and others at elevated risk.
As part of a partnership with the United Way of North Central Massachusetts, AIS will donate 10 percent of each donation made to the United Way in that region.
For more information, to become a “Rosie” or to learn about corporate partnerships and sponsorship of mask creation and donations, visit www.sewthemasks.com.
AIS, headquartered in Leominster, Massachusetts, is a leading manufacturer of commercial office furniture and boasts one of the most impressive stories of growth and success in the furniture industry. Founded in 1989, the company is known for offering market-relevant, feature-rich product lines that entice designers and support the diverse needs of end-users while offering exceptional value. AIS is an innovator that leads the industry in sustainable, lean manufacturing, lead-time performance and manufacturing flexibility. AIS has permanent showrooms at its Leominster headquarters and also in Chicago, New York City and Washington, D.C. With locations across the U.S., AIS has more than 800 employees and over 1 million square feet of office, showroom and factory space. Sales for 2019 were $225 million. For more information, visit www.ais-inc.com.