Sparking Innovation and Meeting the Moment
In true Powerhouse spirit, the MakerLab— spearheaded by Ryan Finnigan—reached out to our community to assess needs and then quickly began designing and prototyping life saving personal protection equipment (PPE). We received dozens of requests for help within the first 48 hours! Soon over 300 volunteers from across the Four Corners region started prototyping, designing, and fabricating PPE for small to large healthcare facilities in our region, including Centura Health-Mercy Regional Medical Center, San Juan Regional Medical Center (Farmington), Southwest Health Center (Cortez), Pagosa Medical Center (Pagosa Springs), and the Northern Navajo Medical Center (Shiprock), and the Navajo Nation ever since.
Four Corners COVID-19 Response Project
The Powerhouse MakerLab has been a perfect workshop space for this challenge, as it has much of the equipment needed to prototype the personal protective equipment (PPE) that’s in high demand now. We tapped the global maker community for open source ideas and what we discovered has been transformational.
Thanks to the generosity of over 450 regional donors: the El Pomar Foundation, The Moniker Foundation, New Mexico Fund, the Gates Family Foundation, and the Coutts & Clark Western Foundation and our GoFundMe Campaign, plus pro bono support from our partners at Fort lewis College Physics and Engineering Department, Alpacka Raft, SoundTraxx, StoneAge, Bedrock Backpacking Bags, Holt Sheet Metal, Rally Design Co., and Stitch—we’ve quickly been able to locally design, prototype, manufacture, and ship PPE and save lives.
As the makers stepped up, the community at large has done so as well with 90% of our $100,000 GoFundMe campaign funded. For every dollar that is contributed we expect to deliver $4 worth of PPE for free. The out pouring of support has lifted our spirits and kept us going late into the night to get our healthcare facilities what they need to save lives.