A local printing company has come up with a way to offer additional protection to school children; they hope to donate a million face shields to schools.
South Africa (02 June 2020) – As schools nationally are gearing up to start on the 8th of June a printing company is challenging South Africans to help them reach their goal of providing 1 million face shields to schools across the country.
“We would like to challenge South Africans to donate face shields to their local school or any underprivileged school,” said Peter Kohnert, owner of printing company Webprinter.
“For only R10 per face shield, you can actively participate in limiting the spread of the virus from 1st of June,” said Kohnert.
The colourful disposable face shields have been specifically designed with schools in mind. The shield provides much-needed protection while incorporating a clear window. This allows pupils to see the educator’s face, which is an important aspect of effective teaching.
The company has already sent out 1500 face shields, and the response has been overwhelming.
“The feedback we got was the children love it to bits. They can see the teachers’ faces and teachers can see them and it doesn’t irritate the skin. So they are very comfortable and really light. They weigh 30g. So it’s easy to wear for a longer time than the face mask.”
After the positive response, they decided to create an initiative called 1 Million Smiles with the goal of providing 1 million face shields to schools across the country.
The face shields are printed and made from biodegradable high-quality cardboard and recyclable plastic for the shield. They have colourful printed designs such as the South African flag and kids have said they feel like superheroes in them.
Konhert said depending on how you handle the face shield, on average you can wear it for a week and it costs only R10 to produce. This works out to R40 per month per child.
“We’ve got donations from South Africa and overseas and we’ve started production of 15 000 face shields for schools. They will be shipped to 30 schools this week,” he said.
They have received around R60 000 in donations which cover the cost of 6000 face shields, the rest of the money they have donated themselves.
“The face shields are 100% locally manufactured, so by supporting this initiative you are also helping to create and support much-needed local jobs,” Kohnert said.
The demand has been overwhelming and there has been a request to produce for 150 schools.
“We can’t produce so many at the moment. We would love to and we will do as much as possible,” said Kohnert.
But they can’t keep going without the support of the public and more donations. Supporters can donate to a specific school or the initiative in general and face shields will then be sent to schools most in need. South Africans who wish to support this initiative can visit https://www.1millionsmiles.co.za/ or donate via the Thundafund here.