A host of celebrities have backed a campaign by a designer fashion house director – and British Army reservist – to sew up scrubs for health worker heroes to help the NHS during the coronavirus pandemic.
Charity campaign Scrubs4Heroes is the brainchild of Martin Kristensen, who is a director of his mother’s designer brand Isabell Kristensen Couture and a reservist with Westminster Dragoons.
The campaign is calling for people with sewing talent to help create personal protective equipment (PPE) clothing for medics on the frontline fight against COVID-19.
Celebrity friends of the fashion label, including The Only Way Is Essex star Jess Wright, Made In Chelsea TV personality Georgia Toffolo, singer Pixie Lott, former Coronation Street actor Helen Flanagan and TV presenter Charlotte Hawkins, are among those who have given their support to the charity drive, with some of them sharing pictures of themselves on social media wearing Scrubs4Heroes PPE clothing, such as protective gowns.
Martin, who helps head up the Danish haute couture brand better known for luxurious evening and cocktail dresses, decided to use his fashion skills to create protective clothing to join the army of volunteers who are making their own efforts to support NHS keyworkers.
VIDEO: I'm A Celebrity 2017 winner and Made In Chelsea star Georgia Toffolo helps to promote #Scrub4Heroes
Celebrity fans of the fashion label have helped to kick-start the campaign on social media by posting pictures and videos with the hashtag #Scrubs4Heroes.
Now Martin is calling on volunteers to join the campaign - particularly those with sewing skills who could follow a pattern to create the PPE based on fashion house designs that meet NHS requirements.
Martin, who was on a basic training exercise at Army Training Centre Pirbright when the Coronavirus outbreak escalated, told BFBS Radio's Elliot Darby, why he decided to get involved.
“It was all happening quite rapidly and staff were beginning to panic.
“Fortunately, in one regard, the training exercise was cancelled – obviously I was gutted at the time, but I can understand why they did it.
“So, I was sent back to London and that enabled me to immediately get on to my team and start organising how they could work from home.”
Scrubs4Heroes provides scrubs free at the point of delivery to the NHS.
The non-profit organisation is providing the fabric, patterns and haberdashery to volunteers but it needs more people with sewing skills to join in to keep this campaign moving.
The charity is also making sure that all volunteers are kept safe by respecting social distancing. Martin said:
“Stay at home, we will bring those fabrics and those materials to you and then we will collect those and deliver them to the NHS Trusts for you.
“All you need to do is donate a little bit of your time.”
Martin is calling on volunteers to contact him via the Scrubs4Heroes social media platforms.
Anyone with a high sewing competency or who works in a professional sewing trade such as costume production, alterations service, hotel tailoring, is asked to contact Scrubs4Heroes via direct message on Instagram or Facebook.
Martin said: "If you're somebody who works ... at a dry cleaners and you do alterations or you're somebody who has their own curtain making business, that's perfect.
"If you're at home and you have those skills, by all means, you're the perfect volunteer for us."
Volunteering is something Martin is used to himself. Reservists do get paid a daily rate but often volunteer their spare time for additional training.
While the Scrubs4Heroes founder admits he is not an elite soldier, he says he cares deeply about the Armed Forces and values his time as a reservist.
He acknowleged that his British Army reserves training helped him start this non-profit campaign. He said:
"I suppose it's that respect for detail, awareness and that commitment as well to a consolidated effort to reach an objective."
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