West Chester, PA – To flatten the curve and slow the spread of COVID-19, Governor Wolf advised all Pennsylvanians to wear a mask any time they leave their homes for life-sustaining reasons. This includes the many people that help run the day to day functions in our county and municipalities. To that end, the Chester County Masketeers are calling on our neighbors’ help to protect our non-healthcare essential community workers in Chester County with homemade masks.  

In an effort to save surgical masks and N95 respirators for our healthcare heroes, we are asking residents to make masks out of 100 percent cotton. “The need is there and growing every day,” said Carolyn Comitta, the coalition’s facilitator. “There are not enough factory made surgical masks – so we are sewing! We are lining up community workers in need and will distribute as many as we sew!”

Mask makers can visit www.chescomasketeers.com/sew to find recommended materials, patterns, and instructions. There are plenty of non-sewing volunteer opportunities including managing logistics, transporting supplies and masks, coordinating donations, cutting fabric, and more. Interested volunteers should join the “Chester County Masketeers Volunteer Discussion Group” where members share advice, tips, and available resources. 

The Chester County Masketeers are currently accepting donations of fabric, thread, scissors or sewing machines. If you would like to make a donation or have access to sewing machines, please contact the group at chescomasketeers@gmail.com.

The biggest thing people can do is continue to share the website and Chester County Masketeers” Facebook page (@ChesCoMasketeers). The more people we reach, the more masks we can make, and the more lives we can protect.

“Helping each other is something we like to do every day. Until now that help might ease someone’s pain or help carry their burden. Today helping others can mean the difference between life and death. ‘Chester County Masketeers’ are neighbors helping neighbors – saving lives one mask at a time,” said Comitta.

Sanitized masks in sealed bags should be dropped at the following locations: 

  • East Pikeland Township Police Department, 1158 Rapps Dam Road, Phoenixville, PA 19460
  • Valley Township Police Department, 890 West Lincoln Highway, Coatesville, PA 19320
  • West Caln Township Police Department, 721 W. Kings Highway, Wagontown, PA 19376
  • West Chester Borough Hall, 401 E Gay St., West Chester, PA 19380

“As of right now, things are very uncertain in the world. All of our lives are being altered due to this horrific virus. It’s our job as a community to protect and care for one another. We believe we live in one of the counties in the country and will do everything in our power to support and protect each other,” said Carissa Pillay and Kassie Newman, coalition members and sewers.  

Chester County Masketeers would like to thank its founding volunteers: Carolyn Comitta: Facilitator, JoAnn Weinberger: Founder, Jay Kwon: Parisian Cleaners – Owner and Tailor, Marge Sume: Quilts for Kids, Tris Ozark: Research Assistant, Hank Mintner: Regal Car Wash Owner and Donor, Steve Deeg, Operations Manager, and McKonly Family, Owners, Kleen-Rite Corporation, Kyle and Leslie Hudson, Crimson Planet Media: Website, Social Media and Graphic Design, Kassie Newman and Carissa Pillay: Branding, Website Admins, and Sewers, Mary Jane Rogan: Volunteer Coordinator, Margaret Reif, Chief Morehead and the West Chester Police Department, Chief Newhall and the Valley Township Police Department, 

Chief Wilson and the East Pikeland Police Department, and Chief Martinez and West Caln Township Police Department.

For more information, please visit our website, like the ”Chester County Masketeers” Facebook page, join the “Chester County Masketeers Volunteer Discussion Group” or email chescomasketeers@gmail.com

Up to date information on COVID-19 health and safety precautions can be found on the Pennsylvania Department of Health website

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