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Join in the NYS 4-H Mask Task!

Let's show everyone what the 4-H pledge is all about!

4-H’ers: Make masks for community members!

The NYS 4-H Mask Task gives back to your local community by sewing and donating a face mask and/or writing a note of gratitude to those in our community who are needing masks during this time!

What is this opportunity?

4-H’ers are invited to express support for local community members who may need masks in light of the NYS guidance that everyone wear masks when going out in public due to COVID-19. Handmade masks and notes of gratitude will be collected at county Extension offices made available to those in need. Together, we can make a difference for our communities!

Why is this important?

Now that wearing a mask is mandatory in New York to the COVID-19 pandemic, availability of masks is running low so we are inviting NYS 4-H’ers, volunteers, friends & family (anyone is welcome!) to step up and help fill the gap.

How do I get involved?

1. View the CDC website page that provides info on on how to sew a face mask (no-sew option available too!) You may also find a different mask pattern that you like and that is fine too!
2. Create your project (work with a caring adult if you need support)
4. Write a note of gratitude, encouragement or support.
5. Share a photo of you and your project on social media platforms using the hashtags #4HMaskTask #CCEResponds #NYS4HResponds (or email the photo to your local 4-H educator).
6. After you have completed a bundle of mask, contact the 4-H Educator at your local County Extension office (316-376-5270 or They will work with you to arrange a time to drop off your masks. The masks will be distributed to community members in need including farm workers, grocery store workers, and anyone else who requests a mask!

Why participate?

  • Your completed projects will fill an immediate need in your local health care system
  • You will grow in your sewing skills
  • You have a chance to encourage community members who may be under stress during this crisis
  • You can document the process and use it for a 2020 County Fair project (health, community service)

What if I can’t sew?

  • Everyone can write a note of gratitude!
  • Purchase or collect donations of fabric and elastic cord and distribute to those who can sew (be sure to use social distancing practices).
  • Spread the word so more people can join the effort.

Click here to view a page called “Everything you need to know about making your own face mask”

Other Things to Note

  • MATERIALS: Fabric made from tightly woven fabrics like quilters cotton or 200 to 300 thread count bed sheet fabric will provide some prevention from a person exhaling virus in droplets expelled during a cough or sneeze. There is no significant protection for the person wearing the mask from inhaling it from others and the cotton masks are not suitable for medical personnel.
  • PATTERNS: Here are two typical patterns:

    The pleated version with ties OR The more fitted version

  • CARE INSTRUCTIONS: please print and include these use instructions from the CDC (in English/Spanish) for inclusion with your masks! You can also include this tag.


CDC Guidance on Mask Making
YOUTUBE mask-making tutorial by Melanie K. Ham


Michele Ledoux
Executive Director
(315) 376-5270

Last updated April 30, 2020