Since the spread of COVID 19, the Indian fashion industry is stepping up to combat the deadly virus. House of Anita Dongre had earlier announced that the Anita Dongre Foundation has raised a medical fund of INR 1.5 Cr to support those effected from Coronavirus without medical insurances. Taking the initiative forward the Indian fashion industry's ace designer has now announced the production of cloth masks for distribution to contribute further in fighting against COVID 19.
Founded in 2015, Anita Dongre Foundation helps to bring back jobs in villages making women independent, it also indulges in training women in arts of tailoring such as sewing, pattern cutting etc making them an integral part of the Indian fashion industry while promoting sustainable fashion.
After receiving adequate permissions from government authorities, production of the masks has begun in two of the five rural village centres that were initiated in collaboration with the Maharashtra state government four years back, starting with Charoti. Through these centres, the Anita Dongre Foundation trains women to make garments and has set up a production facility close to their homes to bring gainful employment to them. With the production of about 7,000 masks each week due to the voluntary efforts of about 24 women, the same would be distributed to NGO's, village residents, individuals and hospitals.
Keeping the production and safety of the women under strict protocols, the village centre staff have a hygienic environment with proper adherence to social distancing. Made of cotton, these reusable masks use fabric that was originally purchased for the production of clothes for the labels AND, Global Desi, and Anita Dongre. These reusable and washable masks are sustainable and can protect against COVID 19. A local hospital around the area in Palgarh, also requested the team to manufacture special disposable masks for the hospital staff which is being well catered to, by the team of the foundation.
As cases and fear mount every day and with masks becoming a compulsion to wear amidst the spread of the deadly coronavirus, the demand for masks is increasing while supply still seems to be limited. Hence, such initiatives become the need of the hour. "Every one of us must do everything within our power to stop the spread of this virus and keep as many people as we can safely. The production of reusable masks is one step in that direction." says Fashion Designer and Chief Creative Officer of 'House of Anita Dongre’. The company clarified that there is no end goal right now- “As long as people need masks they will be produced and distributed” said Anita Dongre.