Even if you lived under a rock, you’d not be able to escape the long shadow of COVID19 covering the world at the moment. It’s literally bad news all day, every day. So it’s so nice to have some positive news for a change. This report comes via Gameforge, German video game publisher behind games like Kingdom Under Fire II.
Gameforge has partnered with a merry band of tech enthusiasts and makers located in a little place called Karlsruhe who’ve decided to use their hobby to aid in the fight against COVID19.
The group called FabLab Bruchsal is a local community organisation of tinkerers, tech advocates and makers, has started making makeshift face shields and respiratory masks. A big challenge in the fight against the pandemic is the global shortage of Personal Protection Equipment or PPE. These are critical in protecting front line medical staff from infection.
So the group at FabLab Bruchsal decided to re-purpose their facilities to start manufacturing these precious items. They cut out the plastic shields by laser while volunteers 3D print the holding frames from the comfort of their homes. These are then combined by a smaller team at the FabLab Bruchsal workspace; a wise precaution to minimize the risk of infection.
FabLab Bruchsal then sends the completed PPE’s to clinics, doctors offices and medical facilities in need. And the best part?
They are free of charge!
Now it’s important to remember that all of FabLabs members are pure volunteers who aren’t getting paid to do this. It’s simply a bunch of everyday people using what they have to help save lives and it warms my heart.
FabLab Bruchsal is doing this as part of a new global initiative called MakersVsVirus. It brings together local businesses, groups and any individual who’s got the capacity to manufacture vital medical equipment. And despite kicking off just last weekend, this small chapter of MakersVsVirus has already delivered 225 face shields to nearby medical facilities with 500 more being manufactured at the time of publishing this piece.
With this kind of impressive performance from such a small group, it’s unsurprising that local businesses that have N95 masks for sale are taking note and coming on board to support them on their noble quest.
FabLabs Bruchsal founding member, Lukas Wingerberg who is also an employee of Gameforge believes in the power of small businesses, video game and tech companies working with enthusiastic makers to creatively solve many of the problems plaguing the world. Be it locally, regionally or globally.
And he’s absolutely right. It would be great to see a local Aussie chapter of MakersVsVirus. We all need to see more of humanity coming together to heal our world.