AFTER Bendigo's Jeanette Bennett saw how the pandemic was affecting Victorian healthcare workers, she knew she needed to help.
With sewing machine and needle in hand, she proceeded to create a product that would help combat fatigue and exhaustion from the long days on the COVID-19 ward.
"I was watching the project one night and one of the nurses was in tears because she was so tired, felt unappreciated and undervalued," Ms Bennett said.
"I also saw one from the Bendigo hospital speaking the other day and she said she felt the same way.
"So I sent the hospital an email and said I'd found these little patterns for soothing eye pillows and asked if they would accept them if I made them."
"The lady from the hospital said they would be more than happy to accept them because they felt no one cared, I wanted them to know I was at least one person that did."
So Ms Bennett got to work and has now made 750 masks to send to Bendigo Health, St John of God Hospital and plans to make more for ambulance workers and more.
"They're like an eye mask made out of cotton fabric and you sew them together, fill them with rice and once you freeze them, you put them over your eyes to soothe," she said.
"At the moment I make between 50-60 masks a day and I've been able to send 650 to Bendigo Health and I've set myself a target of 4500.
"I also plan to send some overseas too."
But Ms Bennett's production line has come to a stand-still with a shortage of rice.
"I've run out of rice and have been finding it difficult to find more at this stage," she said.
"I'm putting the call out to see if there was anyone in Bendigo who might have some old rice laying around they don't want anymore and might want to donate.
"I'm not looking for money or anything like that, I just want to continue helping our frontline workers who have done such an amazing job throughout this COVID-19 pandemic."
If you would like to help Ms Bennett, you can contact her on 0493 099 447.
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