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Local woman sewing masks for students

NOW: Local woman sewing masks for students

ELKHART, Ind.-- Kris Peterson has led the Elkhart County Extension Homemakers for nearly 10 years, sewing clothing and other necessities for people in need.

“We do all kinds of things for the community. Making blankets for the homeless, chair pockets for classrooms, hats and mittens and scarves for people in need in the winter time,” Peterson said.

When the pandemic hit in March her team quickly switched gears to help sew face masks for medical workers.

“This was just another need that I saw this spring when the medical staff was not getting the correct PPE,” Peterson said. “We’ve got what has been approved by the CDC, 100% cotton, and so we’ll switch from making blankets for the homeless to using the same fabric that’s been donated by the community to make masks for the community.”

Together her team produced over 11,000 masks, and now, they’re working to produce an impressive goal of 30,000 masks for students in Elkhart County heading back to school next month.

“I wanted to be able to help the corporations extend their tax dollars, extend their tax base by helping out with more mask making for the kids,” Peterson said.

Peterson’s front porch became a place where community members can come help out, whether that’s to pick up a mask kit and drop off the completed product, or just to donate fabric.

“I want the kids and the teachers protected as they feel that they need to go back into the school, and I want people that have a heart to give back,” Peterson said.

Peterson said that her team will continue to work hard to lend a helping hand to the community

“This is my passion in life is to help other people with the skills that God has given me. I have a passion to sew, a passion to work with fibers and fabrics and so this is just a way that I can give back to the community by doing such a thing,” Peterson said.

Peterson’s front porch along with 11 other sites can be visited to help out.

Peterson also created a Facebook page called “Elkhart Student Masks” for people to help out and give a helping hand.

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