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SCC Makes and Donates Masks for the Navajo Nation

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It didn’t take long for Scottsdale Community College’s students, faculty, staff and community partners to say “YES” to the Navajo Nation when they called for help.

“We outreached to a number of individuals for participation – some were students, others were SCC employees, still others throughout the Maricopa Community College District, and we even had an outside church group that heard about our project and offered to help,” said Dr. Becky Bradley, SCC’s Director of Service-learning & Leadership and who co-lead the mask making effort.

Patty Dimitriou, Vice President of The Realty, and Bobby Martin, President of the Navajo-Hopi Honor Riders, reached out to SCC for help as part of an all-volunteer, grassroots, indigenous-led group working to provide relief to Navajo and Hopi families. The Nation needed 2,000 masks for adults and children. And they needed them right away.

Using the CDC guidelines for no-sew or simple sewn masks, the College held a virtual how-to session and then headed to work for a solid six weeks.

“This was a small way to make a real difference in the lives of the Navajo Nation and the frontline workers assisting them in their battle against COVID-19,” said Bradley. “For SCC, I think it was a way to show that Native people absolutely matter and Artichokes truly do have hearts!”

SCC, along with multiple Maricopa Community Colleges, rallied for the effort. For people who were not able to make masks, the College shared other ways to provide direct relief to Diné and Hopi families and the volunteers who are organizing to assist them:

Share the mutual aid site link:

Donate to or share COVID-19 relief fund:

  • Volunteer to assist with tasks including but not limited to:
  • Navajo language translation
  • Hopi language translation
  • Driving to transport supplies
  • Providing a vehicle, covered trailer, or flatbed for hauling supplies
  • Hauling water or hay for livestock
  • Purchasing food and supplies at a store
  • Providing firewood
  • Providing sheep or wild game for food
  • Cooking for volunteers
  • Sterilizing food containers
  • Assembling food baskets
  • Sewing hospital masks
  • Mixing, measuring, and packaging sterilization solution

The battle isn’t over and the tribes still need help!

How can you help? Talk about the situation, even in passing, to raise awareness. Volunteer through the Navajo & Hopi Families COVID-19 Relief Volunteer Form. Share the Mutual Aid website. Donate to or share the COVID-19 Relief Fund page.

SCC’s Office of Service-learning & Leadership serves to help students take their learning to the next level by facilitating opportunities to connect classroom instruction with real-world experience through service-learning and leadership lessons. By experiencing these, students will develop as more engaged and aware citizens by addressing our local and global community needs.

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