Group of young volunteers produces 500 visors a day

in News · 02-04-2020 12:53:00 · 0 Comments

A group of young volunteers is producing, in Arcos de Valdevez, about 500 covid-19 protective visors per day and donating that material to hospitals and institutions from the district of Viana do Castelo.

>"We have, at this moment, a prototype model ready and tested by Viva Lab do Porto and the raw material needed for the production of 4,500 covid-19 protection visors. We are already producing at least 500 visors per day", said Rafael Freitas

The architect of Ponte da Ponte da Barca is one of 11 members of the group that includes volunteers from the neighbouring municipality of Arcos de Valdevez, "all aged between 20 and 30 and from different professional areas".

"There are students, 'designers', architects, lawyers, computer engineers. We knew each other and the idea of ??starting to produce individual protection material came from a project by Viva Lab do Porto that I shared on Facebook with colleagues, challenge. The network started to take shape. Nobody was invited. Everyone volunteered to help," he explained.

That civic movement was joined by the graphic design 'company Tiagus.

"We use the company's laser cutting machine, which is offering its services free of charge seven days a week," he said.

The production line was set up in a space provided by FAB LAB Alto Minho at In.Cubo - Incubator of Innovative Business Initiatives, in Arcos de Valdevez. Created in 2007, that business initiative incubator is participated by the Câmara de Arcos de Valdevez, by the Polytechnic Institute of Viana do Castelo (IPVC) and by the Association for the Minho Technological Base Incubation Centre (ACIBTM).

"The estimated cost for this initial production is two thousand Euros, which results in about 45 cents per visor that will be offered by us. For this we depend on donations of the raw material. Some of the material we have received so far has been donated to us, offered by private companies and the Chamber of Arcos de Valdevez", explained Rafael Freitas.

The architect added that the production "follows all principles of good hygiene practices in order to guarantee the safety of the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to be distributed, free of charge by the Alto Minho hospital chains, Private Institutions of Social Solidarity (IPSS) ) homes, firefighters, etc."

"The process we follow is very simple but of high rigor in terms of product quality, hygiene and safety. The steps are: laser cutting, cleaning, sponge paste, placing rubber bands, disinfection, and packaging. Delivery will be coordinated by the municipalities and district hospitals," he explained.

To show the work that is being done and to appeal to the donation of raw materials, the group created a page on Facebook, entitled "Volunteer Alto Minho".

"We communicate through our Facebook page, where we publish the material we need as it runs out, and then receive solutions from the most varied sectors of society, from individuals, companies, municipalities, IPSS. We intend to continue to offer material and expand our range of offer, already studying solutions for masks made of Non-Woven Fabric (TNT)", refer to the eleven volunteers in the publications they make daily.

"We call on volunteers who have access to the supply of TNT or who have 'stock' of shopping bags of the same material, who donate to us to produce masks", they ask through the social network.

The group adds that it has "refused in-person visits by journalists and other entities, in order not to compromise the safety of the space, the product and the volunteers".

"We have done our best to respond by videoconference or in writing. At this moment, the most important thing for us is to be able to continue to respond to the needs of society, offering PPE to those who need it most," they maintain.


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