Makers community comes together to 3D-print 'ear savers' for COVID-19 healthcare workers
Makers community comes together to 3D-print ‘ear savers’ for COVID-19 healthcare workers
Kendrick Tay had just completed his masters and was due to apply to be an airforce pilot. But his plans had to be put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“You know, eat already nothing to do,” the 27-year-old joked in Chinese.
Feeling restless, the SUTD graduate was scrolling Facebook when he noticed several schoolmates 3-D printing ear guards - a plastic tension release band worn at the back of the head, designed to hold the elastic straps of surgical masks and bring relief from discomfort around the ears.
“They were printing them in their own capacity and sending them to friends who were working in healthcare,” he said.
“I thought that’s a useful product because healthcare workers who wear surgical masks the entire day will face ear abrasion, especially if the strap is too tight.”
However, Mr Tay felt that more could be done if the printing was done in a “coordinated fashion”. He saw this as an opportunity to bring the ‘makers’ of Singapore together - those who are interested in making their own things and have the tools to do so.
“We are equipped with the skills and equipment, but sometimes it may not be a habit to extend help to others. But this can be a way to get the ball rolling, for this community to give back.”
About two weeks ago, Mr Tay gathered three other SUTD alumni and started a Facebook group called SG Makers Against COVID-19. They posted in other community groups calling for makers who own 3D printers at home and would like to volunteer to produce ear guards.
As of last weekend, the group had grown to about 100 makers - extending beyond SUTD students and graduates - ready to provide their hands and tools for service.
Adapted from CNA’s post.