It is wonderful to hear so many stories of pupils offering service to their local communities, in the ongoing battle against Covid-19. Here, Fifth Form pupil, Farzan Patra (G), explains how he has put his DT skills to good use, to provide vital and much-needed PPE in Bangladesh.
“At the start of lockdown, as I was anxiously waiting on updates regarding my GCSEs I was constantly watching the news. After I saw the state of key workers worldwide, I felt useless not being able to help my community in any way using the skills I had to offer.
“At this point, I saw Mr Day making face visors using a laser cutter and it made me think that this is really a way that I could contribute to the community during the lockdown, as I have the skills to do this due to everything that I have learnt in DT. This was followed by a great amount of support from Mr Day regarding the details on how to make the visors exactly.
“In total, I have made 250 visors and I am making more as the situation with COVID-19 in Bangladesh is still quite bad and the face visors are still really important for the protection keyworkers. I usually spend about 15 minutes on each visor, as they are all hand made. This is because when I got the initial designs from Mr Day it was to be made using a laser cutter.
“However, after searching for a laser cutter near my house in Bangladesh there were no workshops which had it. The nearest was 30 minutes’ drive across town. I looked up some other ways of making it and I found some other ways but did not have all the materials.
“So finally, I used some of the materials I had available to me to make them. The materials I used were A4 acetate sheets, elastic strips and foam.
“I have donated the face visors to local hospitals here. This was crucial as Bangladesh – being a developing country – only has a handful of senior doctors and senior nurses and it was critical to protect them in any way possible, so that patients could get healthcare during this time of pandemic and also in the future.
“Also, another crucial donation was to police officers. In Bangladesh there was a strict lockdown which only allowed you to go out for your groceries. If you were or are affected by Covid-19, the police would bring food and supplies to your home. The police were even in charge of handling burials – all of this without having had the chance to go home to visit their own families in four months.
“I believe it is not just a battle for the frontline staff but everyone else too by way of their own positive contribution, however big or small, towards the control and mitigation of this viral pandemic.”