Students at Kinsale Community School have been working seven days a week to produce vitally important PPE equipment for front-line workers, and they have now launched a Go Fund Me appeal to help them to continue this work.
Over the past fortnight, three students at the school together with eight teachers have produced around 2,000 face shields which have been distributed to front line workers including in care homes in Kinsale, at Cork University Hospital, the Mercy University Hospital, Kinsale Community Hospital, and the fire service.
The initiative was kickstarted after students, Oisin Coyle and Shane Collins came up with a design and produced their own protective face shield prototype on their own home 3D printers. Shane's brother Dylan also came on board.
The design was approved by HSE personnel and within days an assembly line was set up with seven printers producing 28 masks a day.
This increased even further after Kinsale Lions Club sponsored a further 10 printers.
However, while all the raw materials to produce the masks were initially donated, those involved in the project say they now need to raise funds to purchase raw materials to continue to produce shields.
A Go Fund Me page has been established to help financially support the project, and organisers are hoping to raise €10,000 to allow them to continue their work.
Fergal McCarthy, is principal at the school, and said he “couldn’t be more proud of the community response” to date.
He said a lot of work had been put into the importance of the student voice at the school and it was “humbling to find students advising on what to do, and what they need” for the initiative.
“We have been blown away by the support and the goodwill...and we hope that we will be running for some time," he said.
Donations to the appeal can be made at https://www.gofundme.com/f/kinsale-teens-target-covid19-with-3d-technology