Quilt Made from 50,000 Mask Scraps to Be Displayed at Cambridge Public Library in Remembrance of the Many Lives Impacted by COVID-19

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Beginning March 15, 2021, the City of Cambridge will display a commemorative quilt at the Main Cambridge Library made from over 50,000 masks stitched together by local stitch lounge, Gather Here, and Boston Area Mask Initiative (BAMI).

The king-size quilt has been displayed at Gather Here since January 2021 and will now be placed at the Main Cambridge Public Library for the quilt's initial stop on tour around the Greater Boston Area, ending at the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton, MA. During the height of the pandemic, BAMI organized hundreds of volunteers to stitch together face masks for people and organizations in need of PPE. The scraps from these masks, sewn together in this quilt, serve to bind people together to commemorate the countless hours of work volunteers and craftspeople have dedicated to mask making and is the physical embodiment of the 2020 local maker community.

"This past year has been an emotional and difficult one for our community. We've struggled with loss and grief, and those feelings have been compounded with additional stressors such as housing instability and food insecurity. But, this past year has also brought us closer together as a community," said Mayor Siddiqui. "This quilt represents the many emotions and challenges we faced as a community, but in the end shows how we came together to overcome these obstacles. I am so thankful to BAMI and Gather Here for their tremendous work throughout the pandemic, and for creating a beautiful piece of art to capture this moment in time."

"As we mark this solemn anniversary, I encourage our community to pause to remember those we've lost to COVID-19 and the families and friends who will forever feel the pandemic's impact," said City Manager Louis A. DePasquale. "I hope this quilt will serve as a reminder of our shared sacrifices over the last year and the resiliency of our community."

Stephanie Cave, Founder of BAMI explained, "The quilt was sewn in memory of those lost, sewn in honor of those struggling to survive, sewn to commemorate the hours of unpaid labor of thousands, maybe millions, of women around the world who cut, stitched, threaded elastic, packed, delivered, and repeated this every day, week, and month of 2020."

To this day, BAMI continues to make and distribute masks free of charge to hundreds of organizations, hospitals, nursing homes, food pantries, homeless shelters, MBTA and a range of other groups serving vulnerable populations in need of PPE. The organization has focused and delivered in providing free fabric face masks to help stop the spread of COVID-19. The City of Cambridge shares this commitment and supports local makers and volunteers who have dedicated countless hours serving our community.

For more information or questions, please contact Adelina Atamer, Community Outreach Manager for Mayor Siddiqui at aatamer@cambridgema.gov

Page was posted on 3/16/2021 4:16 PM
Page was last modified on 3/16/2021 4:17 PM
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