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Aberdeen woman takes on mask mission

EARLIER this month, Judith Dardis, of Aberdeen, completed her 1 000th cloth facemask, the vast majority of which have been donated to those who cannot afford to buy their own.

When lockdown started, Dardis, who is a therapist, looked for a way to help her local community, as she had time on her hands while she was not permitted to see her clients.

“I have a great love for sewing, particularly quilting. I had a large stash of material, and all the equipment I needed to make the face masks,” said Dardis.

The initiative started when she was asked to lead a team of local VLV members to make 100 cloth masks for Aalwynhof Home for the Aged.

Together with Sonette Muller and a few other ladies, old sheets from the home were soon transformed into comfortable and practical masks, for residents and staff.

The project was so successful that Dardis was asked to make more masks as a community project, and she set to the task with a will, using her own pretty patchwork cottons as well as generous donations of unused fabric from others.

“Masks were given to all of the first children who returned to school in May, and now the main focus is to have masks to hand out to patients arriving at the local clinic, if they do not already have their own,” said Dardis.

Those waiting in the SASSA queues on pay day are also given a free mask if necessary.

At one point, she was down to the last donated sheet to use, but fortunately she has had a good response to appeals locally, and now has a good supply to work with.

“It is a little boring and repetitive, especially now that the pretty material is finished, but as long as there is a need, I will keep making,” she said.

She has now completed almost 1 200 masks and has provided a wonderful service for Aberdeen.

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