A few weeks ago I was scrolling through my personal Facebook feed and I realized that a very old hometown classmate and friend was making homemade masks. I thought, wow that’s pretty cool.
I kept checking back and she just so happened to be making more and more but this time she was offering them online to her friends and family. I left a comment because I was genuinely so happy with what she was doing. Especially since so many people are trying to sell masks at such high prices.
Someone messaged my sister aka Nurse Tasha and offered what he thought was a sweet deal. $2.50 each mask he said. Despite the fact that the people he was offering them to were risking their lives. His response was “I have to pay my bills too”.
When I checked back on Facebook, Mary was booming with masks. Not only just for her immediate friends and family but for everyone. I just knew I had to get in touch with her! I think what she’s doing is so kind and it’s what we need in the world. Without further ado, welcome Mary Alex!
About Mary Alex:
I currently live in Cherry Hill with my boyfriend and our two kittens. I went to Montclair State University and graduated in 2019 with a degree in TV production and digital media. Before working for NBC I worked at an animal shelter as the volunteer coordinator where I was able to help both people and pets. I would post to their social media and take pictures for animal adoption/events. While making masks I have actually been able to donate my empty thread spools to the shelter for their cats to be able to play with. I always loved being able to help people for as long as I can remember and am excited to be able to continue to do that.
Where are you from?
I am from Clifton NJ but currently living in Cherry Hill NJ.
What made you want to do this?
I just really want to be able to help people in any way I can during such a hard/scary time. Growing up I was really close to my great aunts (Mary and Agnes) who lived to be 98 and 102. Hearings how badly this illness has hit nursing homes and the population, in general, is devastating. If I could prevent even one person from getting sick I will feel accomplished.
When you created your first mask did you have any intentions of expanding as much as you did?
Hahaha, I absolutely did not expect to have made as many masks as I have. Funny enough right before everything started getting bad I decided to start sewing again – specifically, I wanted to make myself some pants. This is something I haven’t done since fashion class in high school (2013ish). However, not even a few days after I gathered all the necessary supplies the state was put into quarantine. So instead of looking up tutorials on how to make pants I immediately looked up how to make masks for my mom (who is in a risk category), boyfriend and I. From there I realized we aren’t the only people who need them and started posting on FB to family and friends offering to make free face masks during such a trying time. Long story short, and 168 masks later I’m making them for anyone who needs it and still haven’t made myself some pants.
Were you impacted by Covid-19 in any way?
Not even a month before Covid broke out I had just started my dream job working for MSNBC’s control room at 30 Rock in Manhattan for their election coverages. Unfortunately, because of the situation I was sent home until a later date and am unsure when or if I will be able to return. Thankfully though what truly is important during such a devastating time is that my immediate family is safe and healthy as of right now (knock on wood.) However, a few of my friends have tested positive for Covid (one who is a CNA) and are all recovering. I also have many friends working in hospitals fighting on the front lines who I think about and admire every single day.
How many masks have you made to date?
I tallied it all up for this interview and have made 168 masks on record as of right now. That doesn’t include what I’ve made for my family and neighbors, which I did not put down in my overall tally because those weren’t orders but rather just me offering to make at random times. I really enjoy being able to make masks for people because it not only gives me something to do but helps countless people along the way.
Something to share with the readers…
My masks are 100% free. As someone who lost their job during all of this, I understand the struggle and don’t want anyone to feel obligated to pay for safety. However, I do ask for shipping costs to be covered and anything beyond that is strictly donation-based and NOT required by any means. Again I just want to be able to help people during such a trying time in any way possible.
If someone wants a mask please don’t hesitate to reach out to me!
As always, thanks so much for reading! Questions, comments, and feedback are always welcome. If you enjoyed this post, please comment, like and share! Make sure to check out my Instagram; @T_scorner 💋