Kansas City leather-making business switching to mask-making to help with coronavirus pandemic

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Businesses around the metro are stepping up to help health care workers fight the coronavirus and stay safe while doing so.

Sandlot Goods is now shifting focus from making leather items, like wallets and totes, to sewing cottons medical face masks.

“We purchased materials to make 12,000 masks. It gets my people back in here working, even if it is for a short amount of time, and we feel like we are doing something good for the community,” Chad Hickman, owner of the company, said.

Hickman said when he heard about the shortage, he decided to get to work. He even ordered additional sewing machines, fabric and supplies.

He said his workers, although a skeleton crew at this point, are putting all their energy into a product that could potentially save lives.

“We are running off of donations only right now, and 100 percent of it goes right back into this. We are not looking to make a profit off of it, just trying to keep people working and fill a void,” Hickman said.

To help help achieve his bold goal, Hickman is asking for community help. He wants people to sign up and sew from home. The company will provide the fabric.

Hickman said it is a true community effort, and as long as there is a need, his company will continue to provide.

“Even if these masks are not rated for hospitals, we do know they have some effectiveness, and we know there are organizations that need these, and it has been something that has really been inspiring how quickly the community came together to join us in this,” he said.

He hopes to donate to first responders, including fire departments, police officers, and other front line workers.

If you would like to get involved, click or tap here.

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