The current health crisis brought an urgent need for personal protective equipment (PPE) to the masses. Linda Barnhart, a Nexus Family Healing board member and former nurse, saw this as an opportunity to make a difference in her community.
In April 2020, Barnhart reached out to Nexus Family Healing to see what she could do to help the children and families in Nexus care, from the staff and youth in residential care to the foster families across the state of Minnesota. With her history in nursing, she knew it was important to leave as many supplies for the hospitals as possible, and decided to sew masks for local nonprofits in need of PPE.
Her first batch included 50 masks for Nexus foster families, but the news quickly spread. She was soon asked to make masks for Dakota County foster families, with many other nonprofits to follow. Barnhart reached out to her community for supply donations and more sewists to help meet the growing need. Barnhart and her crew of volunteers – which included 12 sewists and over 65 volunteers who helped gather, prep, and distribute supplies – made over 5,500 masks, 75 scrub caps, and close to 100 headbands. Together, they made a huge impact in Minnesota nonprofits and local foster families.
Hear more about the project in an interview with Linda Barnhart: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tm5PL-hNwnA