Students Donate Face Shields to Protect Health Care Workers Against COVID-19

Effort is designed to address shortage of personal protective equipment in hospitals.

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Courtesy of CUSD Insider

Kyle Vallone (11), a student at Tesoro High School, donates face shields to those in need through CAPO CARES.

Kate Meyers, News Editor

Kyle Vallone, a junior at Tesoro High School, is collecting homemade mask pieces to build face shields for doctors and other medical workers through CAPO CARES, an organization that advocates for public safety and community beautification. 

Vallone was inspired to create this movement because of the shortage of masks during the COVID-19 pandemic; he wanted to make a difference in the fight against the virus and decided to bring the community together to help.

“I had been reading several articles about different organizations that popped up all around the globe to help deal with the personal protective equipment shortage. I wanted our CUSD/CCA community to be able to contribute with the resources that we had,” said Vallone.

These shields provide a tested and proven way to provide our healthcare workers with a second level of defense against COVID-19 by shielding their entire face from airborne droplets containing the virus”

— Kyle Vallone

Not only doctors can wear these face shields, but essential workers can wear them to protect themselves and their customers from spreading the virus.

“We can support other essential front-line workers, such as cashiers and police officers, with face shields to help prevent the spread of COVID-19,” said Vallone.

CAPO CARES is working with MatterHackers to create the face shields to protect against coronavirus. Matterhackers is a company founded in Lake Forest, California that supplies 3D printed supplies and tools, such as 3D printers and laser cutters, which are essential for making these masks.

The face shields designed by CAPO CARES have been tested and approved by the National Institute of Health, so they are safe to use and effectively protect people in need.

“Due to the millions of shield and mask shortages in areas across the nation and world, these shields provide a tested and proven way to provide our healthcare workers with a second level of defense against COVID-19 by shielding their entire face from airborne droplets containing the virus,” said Vallone.

Made from only a 3D-printed headband and a clear plastic shield to cover the face, these shields are easily assembled by MatterHackers. 

CAPO CARES is asking people with 3D printers to print out the headband piece, and drop them off at Capistrano Valley High School on any Wednesday between 12:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. The pieces are then brought to MatterHackers, where they are assembled into face shields and brought to hospitals.

Vallone is excited to do whatever he can to support those in need during this time of crisis with the extra time he has in quarantine.

“Personally, I’m just happy that I can be making a difference in these trying times instead of letting time waste away during quarantine,” said Vallone, “I don’t have the skills or the experience to be on the front lines, so the very best I can do is contributing to an effort for those who are and raising awareness about these initiatives.”

People without 3D printers who are interested in donating headband pieces can borrow a printer from CCA by applying on a Google Form to use one.