Mandela Day comes early for battling Livingstone Hospital

Mandela Day came early for Livingstone Hospital staff when they received 500 masks from a “buy one, donate one” mask project run by the Community Conservation Fund Africa.

Community Conservation Fund Africa executive director Di Luden said the organisation had decided to bring its Mandela Day initiative forward in light of the dire and immediate need for masks at the facility.

“It was the most humbling experience to visit the hospital and interact with the staff, who are exhausted,” Luden said.  “Though coping with the increasing numbers of Covid-19 infections, they [health workers] remain cheerful, upbeat, optimistic and we’re truly grateful for the donation.”



The outer layer of the donated masks is100% cotton, the middle layer is made of Spunbond interfacing which inhibits the transfer of small particles but does not inhibit breathing, while the inner layer is made of polyester.

The donation was arranged through Dr Emma Gardiner and Tania Muthen.

Staff at the handover said the masks would be given to the clinical support services, with the remainder to be used by emergency department personnel and for patients arriving at the hospital without masks.

“The masks are handmade by women in a job creation project, for women who normally sew animal mascots for tourists,” Luden said.  “The lack of tourism and the increase in demand for masks made them adapt their business model to sew masks not only to generate a much-needed income, but they also wanted to assist in trying to contain the spread of Covid-19.

“The masks are available to the general public and for each pack purchased, one will be donated to a local hospital in need.”  The masks are available in four sizes: men’s, ladies, teenagers (age seven to 12), in either a Shweshwe or washed denim look.

Luden said: “We are appealing to everyone to support this initiative, it will not only protect yourself and the people you interact with, but will ensure the survival for a small group of women and their dependents in Kylemore.”

Luden said the initiative would also help provide a much-needed supply of masks for hospitals in the Eastern Cape.

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