Donate & Sew Masks

When Perry Memorial Hospital first opened in 1920, an outpouring of community generosity led to donations of furniture, chickens, and volunteers to sew and mend curtains and linens.  Now, during the Coronavirus pandemic, we are in need of similar support in the form of sewn masks.  Masks are in high demand across the country, and in the event that COVID-19 reachs our community, sewn masks can ensure our staff are kept safe to continue caring for those in need.

Donate Masks, Material, or Time

We are in need of supplies to make masks for our employees.  If you have access to 100% cotton fabric, rope or flat elastic, or 3/8" fabric, those materials can be used to make spare masks.  Please consider donating them to Perry.  

If you have extra masks on hand, please let us know.  It is helpful to know who can be called for extra supplies if needed. 

Finally, if you know how to sew, we are in need of your help.  Based on CDC guidelines, masks can be sewn at home, as long as 100% cotton fabric is used.  Volunteers are greatly appreciated!

Who to contact

If you are interested in donating materials or assembling the masks, please contact Cathy Foes at 815-876-4481.  We will respoond within one business day.   Please call ahead before dropping off any masks or materials.

How to make a face mask

You will need the following materials:

  • 100% cotton fabric

  • Rope elastic cut to 7 inches and knotted at each end


  • Flat elastic (1/8 inches wide) cut to 7 inches


  • Non-elastic (3/8 inches wide) fabric, cut to 36"


  1. Cut the cotton fabric to the appropriate size

    1. 9 inches x 6 inches for adults (high priority)

    2. 7.5 inches x 5 inches for children

  2. Put the right sides of the cotton fabric together

  3. Starting at the center of the bottom edge, sew to the first corner, stop.  Sew the elastic with the edge out into the corner.  A few stitches forward and back will hold this.

  4. Sew to the next corner, stop, and bring the other end of the same elastic to the corner and sew a few stitches forward and back.  

  5. Now sew across the top of the mask to the next corner.  Again, put an elastic with the edge out.

  6. Sew to the next corner and sew in the other end of the same elastic.

  7. Sew across the bottom leaving about 1.5 inches to 2 inches open.  Stop, cut the thread.  Turn inside out.

  8. Pin 3 tucks on each side of the mask.  Make sure the tucks are in the same direction.

  9. Sew around the edge of the mask twice.

Be sure any fabric design is placed horizontally.

Interested in helping?

Contact Cathy Foes at 815-876-4481.  We will respoond within one business day.   Please call ahead before dropping off any masks or materials.