Responding to crisis through volunteer training, coordination and deployment.
MAKE MASKS, SAVE LIVES
A Step-by-Step of the Bucket Brigade Most Mask Maker Project
We use 100-percent tightly woven cotton for the face covering and elastic for the ear loops. Some of this material is donated to us, but we purchase most of it from suppliers in Southern California.
We take the fabric to Santa Barbara County Jail, where inmates with the “Success Stories” program cut it into 12” strips for masks. [Update — this program has been put on hold because of a recent COVID-19 outbreak among Sheriff’s staff members at County Jail.]
The fabric strips are sent to Mission Linen for laundering.
In the Montecito Association conference room (located at the Montecito Library), the fabric and elastic is packaged in seal-top plastic bags. We call these our “Mask Making Kits.”
Each mask-making kit includes enough fabric and elastic to make 25 masks. An instruction sheet with a pattern is included in each kit.
When our mask makers have completed masks for pickup and need a delivery of more material, they fill out this online form.
On delivery days, mask-making kits are loaded into clean five-gallon buckets, based on the routes, and each bucket is assigned to a driver.
We optimize the delivery routes with the Route4Me app and email it to our drivers. On delivery day, they also get a hardcopy of the route, plus any special instructions for particular addresses, such as a tricky driveway or a number the driver can call if he or she gets lost.
When drivers arrive at Montecito Library, they pull up to a table and scan a check-in QR code (to activate their volunteer shift), preferably without getting out of their vehicle.
A Bucket Brigade staffer places a driver’s bucket of mask-making kits into the truck of their vehicle or through an open window. We also give drivers sandwiches, snacks, and soda for the drive. Across the street at Village Service Station, they can get $15 in free fuel. Drivers are now ready to go!
When a driver is finished with the delivery route, which includes returning to the library to drop off finished masks, the QR code is scanned again to end their shift.
Finished masks are counted bagged and sent to Ablitt’s Fine Cleaners (pictured) to be laundered.
Upon return from Ablitt’s, volunteers wearing gloves and masks inspect and sort the finished masks by size, and package them in seal-top plastic bags.
On the next delivery day, these completed masks are distributed by our volunteer drivers to essential service workers throughout Santa Barbara County!
Face Shield Makers Project
Running parallel to our Most Mask Makers Project, the Bucket Brigade has been assembling and distributing plastic face shields for essential service workers across the county. Launched by volunteer Marco Farrell, this project deploys about three dozen 3D-printer enthusiasts to print face-shield parts with free filament provided by the Bucket Brigade. The parts are then collected by our drivers, and the face shields are assembled and boxed during safe, family friendly volunteer workdays in the Montecito Library parking lot.
An anonymous donor is providing up to $10,000 to match any donations made to our Face Shield Project. If you would like to help us purchase more filament for our 3D-printer team, click here:
In addition to our mask and face shield projects, the Bucket Brigade has teamed up with other agencies and nonprofits to fill hundreds of volunteer shifts across the county — from delivering food to vulnerable families and homebound seniors, to assisting at homeless shelters and community centers.
PLEASE DONATE TODAY!
We need your help to continue this work! With the cancellation of our annual fundraiser and two unexpected COVID-19 PPE campaigns in full swing, we need your help more than ever before. Please, please support the Santa Barbara Bucket Brigade during this difficult time. Every gift makes a difference!