We at Kinetic Dance Academy have a long history of supporting OlyMEGA, a nonprofit makerspace in Olympia. We support the organization so much that one of the Kinetic Dance Academy family is a member of their executive board. They helped us brainstorm and implement some of the technology in our studio, and OlyMEGA members helped us with our initial remodel of an empty warehouse into a beautiful, safe space to teach and learn dance.
OlyMEGA has been producing Personal Protective Equipment with their three 3D printers at least eight hours per day since mid-March, and their members are also making reusable cotton face masks at an impressive pace. They are making and handing out tools to other crafty people, so that they can also make this equipment easily and quickly. They are running out of raw materials and the funds to purchase more materials to continue production. As a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, any donations are tax-deductible. The members who are producing this equipment are volunteering their time, so any donations will be used to purchase raw materials or equipment to continue making PPE.
As of April 17th, they have created 562 face-shields, 347 face mask ear relief extenders, and more than 100 handmade cloth face-masks. They have donated this equipment to South Sound Behavioral Hospital, Northwest Bloodworks, the Olympia Police Department, the Olympia Post Office and other organizations. JUNE 15 UPDATE: OlyMEGA has made more than 1000 face shields and many hundreds more ear relief extenders, face mask and face shield clips, cloth face masks and tools for others to produce cloth face masks. This huge volume of 3D prints has worked their 3D printers hard. Each has needed to be taken down for maintenance and recovery from the heavy use, with some needing replacement parts. Although Washington State is in the midst of reopening, the demand for this PPE still remains strong, and OlyMEGA is still fulfilling orders of a hundred or more items each week.
In an effort to ensure that they can continue producing this equipment, OlyMEGA started a GoFundMe campaign, and will use any funds generated to purchase the raw materials to continue this production. When we pull out of this crisis, any remaining funds raised will be used to help the local maker community grow, by ensuring a place where anyone who is curious can learn how to use tools like 3D printers, laser cutters and sewing machines to name just a few.