With the unprecedented demand on the NHS, Birmingham Repertory Theatre is eager to help. As many staff members are unable to work during the current crisis, they are turning their attention to supporting the NHS and its staff. The theatre has identified two ways to help and you may be able to support the efforts.
The REP’s wardrobe team have transferred their exceptional skills to helping frontline NHS staff. Head of Wardrobe Kay Wilton and Senior Costume Maker and Supervisor Caroline Mirfin have been tirelessly working from home to make gowns and scrubs for staff at Heartlands and Solihull Hospitals. Hospitals across the region are in urgent need of PPE (personal protection equipment) so if you have a sewing machine and are willing to make gowns for use as PPE, then please email COVID-19.PPE@bhamcommunity.nhs.uk to register your interest. Materials and patterns will be provided.
To help stop the spread of the virus, frontline staff are using machine washable bags for their clothing. This enables them to simply put their bag containing worn clothing into a washing machine following their shift. This in turn limits the amount of handling required and therefore limits the likelihood of spreading the virus. REP staff are collecting linen for the creation of these bags for staff at Sandwell and City Hospitals.
If you have any spare, clean linen that can be washed at 60° or more, and pass The REP during your daily exercise, you will be able to donate the linen at the stage door on Cambridge Street. The first donation time will be Friday 24 April between 10am and 2pm with more times to be announced. (The REP ask that you only donate on the times announced and do not leave linen outside if the stage door is closed.) Social distancing measures will be in place.
If you have a large quantity of linen or do not currently exercise near The REP, the theatre may be able to arrange to collect your donation. Please email email@example.com for further details about collections. The donated linen will then be passed on to volunteers who will create the bags whilst working at a safe distance from others. If you are able to, please cut the linen to 22 inches by 22 inches as this will help the volunteers.
If you can help with the above, please do, but remember we can all help the NHS by adhering to the government’s guidelines.