When Covid-19 took hold in the UK earlier this year it challenged us all to dig deep and come together to help those around us in any way that we could. The diversity and effort of support seen across the country was overwhelming, and still continues today. Below is the story of Julie Goddard and Helen White from the Human Engineering department at Martin-Baker and their efforts during the pandemic.
“The tragic stories and news reports that started hitting the news headlines in March just fuelled the determination of the British public to support as many people as we could, whether family, friends, neighbours or complete strangers. Businesses changed tack and started producing medical PFE and equipment to support demand and although some of us couldn’t support on such a grand scale some of us did what we could, with the experience, knowledge and tools that we did have, on a smaller one.
After spending some time researching the optimum ‘fit, form and function’ of a suitable face covering Helen and I embarked on producing small batches for our own family and friends to help keep them safe. Design had to take into account those family members wearing hearing aids and glasses, without a nose bridge fitted we found that our glasses were steaming up in no time……!!
Suitable cotton fabric was difficult to get hold of at the time, due to the closure of haberdasheries, so we raided our linen cupboards and repurposed any suitable surplus bedding. Once we had exhausted our own supply we put out a call to arms and fabric donations soon began to come in from family and friends. This supply of fabric not only then gave us the means to produce face coverings to help those we knew but we were also able to produce hundreds more to help those we didn’t. I think it was at this point that we saw an opportunity to turn this dreadful unprecedented situation into a positive one by charging a small fee for each mask and donating the proceeds to Cancer Charities. Word soon got out and to date we have produced over 700 face masks and raised £1,053.50. We were just happy that we could get involved and do our bit.
Demand saw us mass producing at one point during the summer months supporting delivery drivers, working for both small local businesses and larger well known corporate food chains, and for school children returning to education in September.
Helen and I would personally like to thank all those members of staff at Martin-Baker, especially those in Cell A, for their generous and kind donations that went above and beyond the cost of the masks. Your support played a massive part in achieving this remarkable total……and for the Cherry on the Cake…. the Company have agreed to double the amount raised (so many thanks indeed!).
On speaking to staff members and hearing their stories we have taken the decision to split all monies raised between four cancer Charities…. MacMillan, Marie Curie, Leukemia Care and Rennie Grove Hospice Care.
Helen and I will continue to support these Charities as long as we still hold stock of face coverings. If anyone is interested please get in touch. We are down to our last 68….”