Making a Difference From Home

Jefferson College of Nursing student starts mask business.
Person wearing a clear mask.
Sophie Ferguson makes clear masks to help people with hearing impairments read lips.

For the last decade, Jefferson College of Nursing student Sophie Ferguson and her mom, Michele, have made burp cloths from their home. However, when COVID-19 hit, they both realized they needed to shift their business to address the nationwide shortage of masks.

Since March, they have sown some 750 cloth masks in a variety of styles, including food, animal and sports prints. Most recently, they began creating clear masks to help people with hearing impairments.

“I saw a girl on a Facebook video communicating with her mother who was wearing a clear mask,” says Ferguson, who learned to sew from her mom and honed her skills in a high school fashion design class. “The girl was deaf, and she needed to read lips. After watching this interaction, I decided to add these masks to my repertoire for anyone who needs them.”

Mask with fireworks prints
Nursing student Sophie Ferguson has donated masks to businesses and frontline workers.

Their business, SoSoMaxx, has donated many masks to businesses and frontline workers, and with those that they sell, a portion of the profits go to a local animal shelter.

“We will continue to make masks for as long as we need to wear them,” Ferguson says. “We happen to have a skill that meets the needs of our community. I believe that makes us obligated to do our part.”

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