South student helps local mask drive


Charleworths workspace

Lizzie Allen, Staff Writer

With school days being shortened drastically, students now have an abundance of time on their hands. One South student has found a way to occupy her time and also help the community as she remains isolated.

Junior Naomi Charlesworth is participating in the Bloomington Mask Drive, an organization of Bloomington residents who are making reusable fabric facemasks to be distributed in the community and to essential workers.

“Anyone can request masks and they’re free, but they are distributed based on priority or exposure risk. Only the best quality ones are given to healthcare providers to ensure their safety, but all the masks are distributed and used by someone,” Charlesworth said. 

Charlesworth started volunteering to make masks for the drive on April 3, after her grandmother told her about a similar drive in Indianapolis. The drive provides all the materials needed to make the masks, as well as the pattern. All that the volunteer needs is a sewing machine and a little time, and Charlesworth has both of those. In fact, she learned to use her sewing machine explicitly to make masks. 

“I learned to use a sewing machine a week ago just to try and help,” said Charlesworth.

Many others are participating in such drives like Charlesworth is. With so much uncertainty surrounding the end of self-quarantine, and the Covid-19 pandemic in general, anything civilians can do to help is beneficial. Charlesworth is taking an extra step, and helping the Bloomington community by providing more and more facemasks to those in need.