Thanks to Facebook, one Montezuma teen is making a difference in the fight against COVID-19.
Mia Boulton, 15, along with the help of her mom, Marie, and sister, Elise, have been making face masks and donating them to friends and family, community members and businesses.
It all started in early April when Mia was on Facebook and saw various posts asking for help finding face masks. Restaurants, grocery stores and community members were all in need of them.
“At the time, I didn't think much of it,” added Mia, who was still adjusting to the new quarantine lifestyle of online school assignments and individual running workouts.
It didn’t help that Mia hadn’t touched a sewing machine in what she said seemed like forever.
“Then, out of the blue, my mom asked if I wanted to begin a new project, sewing a couple of masks for our family,” she said. “I thought it might give me something to do, so I agreed.”
Mia dusted off her sewing machine and went to work. Her grandmother, Denise Rabenold, had some old fabric scraps from various projects that she had gathered, such as curtains, table runners and other recycled material. And Debbie Iverson, a teacher’s aide at Montezuma, also donated lots of fabric to use during the project.
After making a few face masks, Mia said she made one post on Facebook about her project and and soon tons of community members started requesting homemade masks. Since then, Mia and family have made 170 face masks…and they are still going.
Each mask takes about 20-25 minutes to make. However, Mia said she has learned how to make five or six masks at a time, which has made the process go faster.
“Most of the time we would sew for around two hours and then take a break,” she said. “We would finish anywhere from 10-15 masks per day.”
Most of the masks have been donated to community members and family friends, but Mia said she has mailed a few of them to a couple families in the Des Moines area and even to relatives who live out of state.
“We also did a large order for Monica's Restaurant employees in Coralville,” she said.
Mia said the best part of the project is the pictures and notes that she receives from everyone wearing them.
“I love knowing that I helped someone out during this hard time,” Mia said. “The best thing we can all do right now is to help one another, and this was just my way of doing so.”