We're volunteer makers, educators, librarians, scientists, museum staff, and public servants fabricating personal protective equipment (PPE) for the State of Illinois. The Illinois PPE Network is comprised of individuals from DePaul University, Northwestern University, Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Public Libraries, the Museum of Science and Industry, the Chicago Peace Fellows, and Illinois makerspaces, libraries, and schools. Now serving over 100 hospitals and institutions.
How does this work?
The Illinois PPE Network functions on a node-based system. As makers join our network, we activate them with other people in their area -- a node. We then supply them with the raw resources they need to fabricate PPE. We provide the standards, best practices, and a template for how each node can go about fabricating PPE, then match them with a local institution in need.
Our system is based on ideas of resiliency, localism, and fault tolerance: a key advantage in dynamically changing times.
How do I copy this for my state? - Jay Margalus explaining the Illinois PPE Network model at the Chicago Council on Science and Technology.
How do I start a node? - Eric Landahl put together some great Node Protocols to follow explaining how to get your node started and how to manage it.
How do I liberate my machines? - Many institutions are still not allowing their equipment out of their buildings. This is a template created by Pam Daniels that explains to administrators why they should let you get your equipment back to use.
How do I get my local makerspace involved? - We have sample templates written by Pam Daniels to help you reach out to leadership and recruit your local makerspace in our efforts and a letter from the Chief of Policy & Strategic Initiatives for the Chicago Department of Public Health requesting activation of any and all available makerspaces.
How do we distribute our PPE? - Completed PPE is delivered in several ways. Primary amongst them is through bike couriers. We also utilize a group of local medical students ferrying PPE throughout the City of Chicago, local police officers, or deliver the PPE ourselves.
What PPE should I wear? Face shields are intended to be worn over a face mask. Here's a visual explainer.
Our charter document - A one-page document that explains who we are and what we are doing.
Is anyone making a nickel off of this? - No, not one of us. We are a network of volunteer makers, educators, librarians, scientists, and museum staff who are solely interested in helping the people in our state stay healthy.