A Hempstead teenager made hundreds of pieces of PPE.

A Hempstead High School junior is partnering with local nonprofits to 3-D print plastic personal protective equipment for his school’s staff and area essential workers to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Fortuntatus Adeyemi teamed up with the United Way of Long Island, the Hempstead School District, and Morrison Mentors, a science and technology training program that he graduated from, to 3-D print face shields and masks at the Alverta B. Gray Schultz Middle School.

“I had been doing nothing since the quarantine began and I just wanted to help the community,” says Adeyemi. “I’ve seen so many people out there struggling and needing equipment. There was a variable shortage of masks out there. It really affected us.”

The PPE he makes stands out from others for their ability to be cleaned by disinfectant wipes. They also come with unique features such as filters, filter replacements, and ear reliefs. Material is bought and funded by the nonprofits involved. 

“The masks allow for reusability, unlike the regular ones that are no longer efficient once they get wet or are worn too many times,” says Doron Spleen, executive director of Morrison Mentors. “A lot of parents don’t have the money to pay for that type of PPE equipment over and over and over.”

More than 300 face shields and masks were donated last Friday to cafeteria staff, security guards, custodians, administration and volunteers throughout the Hempstead School District. Some PPE will be worn by students from the Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell to protect them as they distribute meals to families of the Hempstead community. A new batch of 300 is planned to be distributed to medical facilities, police departments, sanitation workers, and the homeless. 

“It’s going to give immediate relief for folks to figure out the next step,” Spleen says. “With COVID hitting, and us moving all of our learning courses and workshops online, you know it feels great to still be able to give back during a time like this.”

For more information about Morrison Mentors visit facebook.com/pg/MorrisonMentorsInc

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