A group of crafty north-east makers are creating scrubs for the NHS by using old children’s duvet covers.
Mel Shand, who works as a full-time artist, created Finzean Scrub Hub out of a need to help those on the frontline during the Covid-19 pandemic.
She said: “When lockdown was first enforced, I started a ‘Need a Neighbour’ WhatsApp group which had about 90 people in it, and that was primarily for helping people out in the community.
“Somebody on there posted a link to another Scrub Hub group, and I thought I should start a separate group for those who were interested.
“We now have 14 people in the group, and they range from artists and teaching assistants to musicians and yoga teachers.
“A couple of them said they couldn’t sew, but wanted to muck in and help.”
The members are converting old children’s duvet covers into comfortable scrubs for NHS Grampian and care homes in the region.
Sewing materials are picked up and scrubs are safely deposited at a drop-off point.
Mel added: “The advantage of using duvet covers is that they have been washed many times and they are soft to wear. Most people have bed linen kicking around which they don’t necessarily need.
“We’ve made a Thomas the Tank Engine set, a Harry Potter set, a Little Mermaid set and a teddy bear set. We realised you can make six sets of scrubs out of two single duvets.
“Everybody in the group is around my age with children who are grown up now so it’s been really handy in that sense.
“We also bought 50 metres of cotton decorated with red and white stars, which we thought was fitting, with a donation we received from the Finzean Farmers Ball committee.”
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The divisional general manager for surgical services at NHS Grampian helped to deliver the first set of 40 scrubs to the hospital.
Cameron Matthew, who lives in Finzean, said: “I can’t sew or do anything like that, but I offered to help co-ordinate getting the the scrubs to ARI.
“I helped the group to get the scrubs laundered and to ensure they were washed and labelled prior to being delivered.
He added: “The feedback has been absolutely fantastic, I’m surprised the scrubs have made the impact that they have.
“They have really helped to brighten the place up and it gives the staff a boost.
“The scrubs are soft and a lot lighter and comfier than the traditional ones we wear, and they keep people cool under the amount of PPE they are wearing. Staff are wearing it for hours at a time so they get really hot and sweaty.
“The hospital serves the communities these people are living in so if they are giving something back it’s great.”
A spokeswoman for NHS Grampian said: “We are so grateful to the Scrub Hub for their hard work and the beautiful scrubs they have produced. They are a great addition to our core stock of scrubs.”