Auntie Sewing Squad
Volunteer QTNB, WOC & friends sewing masks for frontline and vulnerable communities.
We are a group of self-sufficient
Who do we make masks for?
At the start of the pandemic we made masks for medical, frontline and essential workers. Now that cheaper masks are available on the market, we have pivoted our efforts to making them for very vulnerable communities that are not even able to access cheap masks. These are communities where Covid-19 outbreaks are considerably higher and are getting far less Federal support--First Nations, farmworkers, migrants seeking asylum, incarcerated communities, and poor communities of color. What many of these communities have in common is that they have historically borne the brunt of structural racism and violence. We work with a vast network of community organizations to distribute the masks, including CASA, Alma Backyard Farms, South Texas Human Rights Center, and Lao Family Community Development.
We strongly urge any community that is able to afford buying masks to choose that option over asking us for our unpaid labor.
In addition to sewing masks, we have also supported sewing crews on different First Nations with sewing and hygiene supplies sent via relief van.
Can people make a general donation to the group?
YES! Art2Action is now the fiscal sponsor for the Auntie Sewing Squad, so your donation is tax-deductible! Anyone who wants to support the Squad's efforts can donate to a general fund that we use to purchase materials (fabric, thread, elastic) in bulk and to ship large batches of masks to frontline workers and vulnerable communities. We have already shipped masks all over the country. We will keep making masks and sending out materials until we run out of money. So keep donating, so we can keep providing masks to the people who need them most!
What's the history of this group?
The Auntie Sewing Squad was founded on March 24, 2020 by performance artist and comedian Kristina Wong as a casual effort to connect with other friends sewing homemade masks for essential workers due to the Federal Government’s failure to prepare them with personal protective equipment. Originally intended as a three week stopgap, the Auntie Sewing Squad is still sewing and has since exploded into a network of hundreds of active Aunties across the United States who have shipped tens of thousands of masks to vulnerable communities across the North American continent. Our team of Aunties are college professors, costume designers, screenwriters, scientists, authors, actors, healthcare workers, retirees, teachers, students, award winning artists and filmmakers, labor organizers, graphic designers, lawyers and all over badasses. Our youngest Auntie is 8 while our eldest is 93. We are juggling families, careers, and our own losses from Covid-19, in addition to this sewing labor.
On May 14, 2020, Art2Action became the proud non-profit fiscal sponsor for the Auntie Sewing Squad. Our mission is to support Black, Indigenous and People of Color, LGBTQ2+ and women artists. We support artists of all abilities, and creative allies. Art2Action, Inc. is a Section 501(c) (3) charitable organization. Your donation is tax-deductible! Art2Action waives all sponsorship fees for the Auntie Sewing Squad, so that every penny you donate goes directly to making a difference for those who need it most.