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JOANN Mobilizing Crafters to Help Health Care Workers
Ohio Ag Connection - 03/23/2020

As hospitals and health care facilities run dangerously low on critical supplies, America's crafting and sewing communities are jumping in to help. Groups across the nation have started sewing and crafting protective masks, gowns and other essential items to donate, and JOANN Stores is stepping up to help as many of these generous makers and health care facilities as possible.

Beginning March 23, while adhering to social distancing guidelines, JOANN, headqartered in Hudson, Ohio, will open its classrooms to any who want to help make these essential items. Participating locations will offer sewing machines, materials and guidance to help customers safely make facemasks and covers, gowns and other items to donate to America's hospitals. JOANN will provide and donate 100% of the supplies needed for these projects for those who come in to make.

"The amazing thing about the crafting community is that, especially in difficult times, they are always looking for ways to help," said Wade Miquelon, president and CEO. "We are seeing hospital workers, organizations and individuals coming into our stores for supplies to make these essential items, and our customers are asking us how they can help. So many are spending their time and money to help in this tragic situation, and we want to step in to do our part to protect the amazing people who are helping the communities we serve."

Classroom occupancy will be limited to adhere to the CDC-recommended guidelines for social distancing and local restrictions, and Team Members will ensure continuous sanitization of materials and spaces, as well as the rest of the store. If you would like to participate in making supplies, visit joann.com/stores to find a classroom near you. Those who want to make-to-give to the effort at home will be able to take advantage of JOANN's Ship-to-Home and Curbside Pickup options, and find tutorials to create the items at joann.com/maketogive.

All open JOANN locations will serve as collection points for those making in their homes, and all items created by customers will be donated to help medical systems extend their dwindling supplies of protective equipment, and will be used at the hospital's discretion.

In addition to helping individuals make-to-give, JOANN is working with larger hospitals and medical facilities to secure materials such as fabric, elastic and clear vinyl to hospitals that are in need of supplies. Entities in need of supplies should contact joannplus@joann.com.

In addition to Curbside Pickup in all 860 stores across the country, JOANN is taking additional steps to protect its stores, customers, and Team Members while ensuring their livelihood and mental wellness.

"It is a frightening time for many, but we have a generous community who can make a big difference as our healthcare system faces this crisis," Miquelon said. "We're here to support them, and all who make to give year round. We are all in this together."

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