Project PPE 4 Central Coast

PPE4CC is a movement by people in healthcare and in our communities on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you are an organization or business that needs supplies in order to provide essential services, click the button above to tell us about your situation and request materials. 

About PPE4CC

Started by Idea Fab Labs Santa Cruz, and Catherine S. Forest, MD, MPH, FAAFP, with the encouragement of Encompass Community Services, followed by the partnership with the Santa Cruz County and Monterey County Medical Societies, we began to address the emerging shortages of PPE. The non-profit working world of organizations like Encompass Community Services workers, followed by the avalanche of requests for help from other front line workers (residential care, janitors, bus drivers, grocery checkers, medical assistants, ambulance services, etc.), and including the news about essential shortages from other states, is what led us to try to get ahead of the curve.


Our Philosophy: We strongly support #SaferInPlace and #SocialDistancing. When absolutely necessary for work or essential services. Every person should be wearing a mask appropriate to level of risk outside #SaferInPlace and we should move immediately toward innovation. We strive for equity in protection for all.

If someone's work meet’s OSHA requirements for respiratory droplet protection, they should be wearing NIOSH approved PPE, if available.


However, as supplies are drying up globally, we seek to innovate and utilize reusable, local materials and crafters. We are striving to provide the best available protection in the context of the global pandemic in the service of our community and in collaboration - radical interdependence.

The shortages are PRESSING:

We are in desperate need for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in order to ensure the safety of both healthcare workers and those whose work necessitates them to be out of shelter in Santa Cruz County.

We seek to:

  1. Advocate for more PPE production (#getusppe).

  2. Send, receive, and coordinate donations for PPE among the community and medical professionals.

  3. Coordinate with government, non-profits, others for most effective use of resources. Prioritize NIOSH approved N95 and surgical masks for high risk occupations, integrate alternatives (eg. locally manufactured cloth masks with face shields only if shortages mandate innovation).

  4. Unite the maker community to validate designs that can be easily and rapidly fabricated at local manufacturing facilities and produced within the community.

  5. Contribute to the fund of knowledge locally and nationally.


IFL Washable Cotton Mask

By Idea Fab Labs

This 4-layer washable cotton mask is intended to improve on typical DIY masks by using four cloth layers to better trap fine particles and by improving the fit to reduce the flow of particles around the edges of the mask, based on industrial hygiene concepts.

Rather than the pleated, 2-layer surgical style, the model has an N95-inspired fit. It is designed to be snug against the cheek and around the chin, with an embedded moldable wire nose bridge to reduce incursion around mask edge.  Four alternating layers of grain-cut and bias-cut fabric should help reduce incursion of large, high-volume, high-viral-count droplets.  The interstitial pocket offers added filtration using any available filter material (HEPA, melt burn, coffee filters, fine copper mesh, etc.). 


It’s easily made by anyone with a sewing machine.  It’s adaptable for improvisation based on local materials shortages during pandemic, such as elastic straps. It takes advantage of the availability of cloth, since plastics and medical materials are in global shortage.  Cloth masks use easily sourced, locally available materials. 


The design is made available open source here and on the Idea Fab Labs website and volunteers are eager to make the masks.

The 2-layer mask builds on the concepts of the 4-layer mask, but is easier to sew and can be used anywhere a cloth mask is required. Check out the DIY instructions and pattern for the 2-layer, washable cloth mask below. 


We Need your Help!

This is how you can help:

Can you CONTRIBUTE to our efforts? Use GoFundMe to make a financial donation now.

Do you have supplies to donate? Bring your donation of supplies to 2809 Mission St. Santa Cruz CA on Tuesdays or Fridays between 3pm and 5pm. We are accepting donations of the following items:

  • cotton fabric

  • gloves

  • handmade masks (2-layer)

  • face shields

  • Materials for face shields

  • elastic

  • opened boxes of N95s and surgical masks 

    • all unopened n-95s and surgical masks should be donated directly to your County Health Services Agency or your local hospitals.

In Partnership

Specific Thanks

Sara Mayeno, David Culler, Pete Johnson, Jonna Paiss, Eileen Mov, Chris Maddox, Jacob Lang, Anne Buike, and Dana Peters




LEAGAL DISCLAIMER: The Mask information and instructions here do not guarantee protection against transmission of any diseases, but there is significant data to support the use of physical barriers to reduce transmission of airborne droplets, which can infect you with respiratory viruses. Commercially available masks meet regulatory guidelines, homemade masks may not. Homemade masks are to be used at your own risk. Due to variability of materials and construction, the mask's safety or effectiveness for personal protection is not proven and cannot be assumed. Jordan Layman, Catherine S. Forest, MD, MPh, FAAFP, Sara Mayeno, David Culler, Pete Johnson, Jonna Paiss, Eileen Mov, Chris Maddox, Jacob Lang, Anne Buike, Dana Peters or anyone associated with or or .com and any it's partners or supporters assume no liability and make no representations, warranties, or guarantees regarding the safety, efficacy, or appropriate use of these masks in any particular situation. Use of this information for any purpose is at the maker’s and user’s own risk.

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© 2020 by PPE4CC with