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Bield housing manager gets crafty to overcome PPE shortage

Rena Kirton-Vaughan has sewn more than 80 face mask protectors for colleagues to enable them to continue providing vital support and services to older people and vulnerable members of the community.

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As frontline workers continue to see a shortage in PPE equipment, a staff member at a housing organisation decided to take matters into her own hands – literally.

Rena Kirton-Vaughan, Retirement Housing with Meals Service Manager at Bield, has sewn more than 80 face mask protectors for colleagues to enable them to continue providing vital support and services to older people and vulnerable members of the community.

The face masks have been distributed to her colleagues and staff at Brae Court and Bield at Home in Linlithgow as well as family, friends and tenants at Brae Court

Rena Kirton-Vaughan said: “At a time where we can feel helpless, I thought I’d put my mind to something to make a difference in a positive way. Two other members of staff at Brae Court, Louise Rintoul and Fiona Hamilton, assisted in the making of these masks.

“We began to make the masks to try to help protect fellow colleagues who are carrying out essential frontline work.

“I collected some face masks via Facebook to see the design and then watched some YouTube tutorials and sourced spare fabric.To start with, it was just about trial and error, but, once you get the hang of it, the masks are actually pretty straightforward to make.

“Although the face protection masks are only fabric, they are better than nothing, and many of my colleagues have said they feel safer even with the little bit of protection.

“My colleagues and I undertake meal prep and delivery and the Bield at Home Team provide personal care, medication administration, and assistance with dressing, so we are working really closely together, which is why I thought it would be a good idea to start making the masks.”

Lynne Douglas, Chief Executive of Bield, said: “We are really grateful Rena took time out of her day to make these masks to help her colleagues in Linlithgow.

“They will enable staff to continue their amazing work while providing an invaluable care service for individuals who are amongst the most vulnerable in the community.

“We have been really overwhelmed at the level of kindness and generosity which has been shown towards Bield in communities across Scotland and we really appreciate the hard work of our dedicated staff members”.

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