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Lafayette Public Library staff members are trying to help those in health care during the coronavirus pandemic by using their 3D printers to make face shield  components.

The library is using its Studio 775 Makerspace to work with Make4COVID, an organization that distributes face shields to health care organizations across the state.

Lafayette Librarian Kate Merrell uses a 3D printer in the Studio 775 Makerspace printing a face shield component to donate to Make4COVID. (Photo courtesy of Melinh Doan)

“Everyone wants to do something right now,” said Library Director Melissa Hisel. “It’s very gratifying to be able to do this while the library can’t be open. It’s one small thing we can do.”

Staff began printing components for shields after they found an organization that works with  health care facilities to which they could be donated, Hisel said.

“We had been aware of different designs for personal protective equipment for 3D printers,” she said. “What we were seeing in early weeks was folks were creating masks and different components but didn’t have a place that would accept them.”

After learning about Make4COVID, Hisel said staff knew that would be the right organization to work with on its efforts.

Components being made in the library makerspace will go to places such as children’s hospitals, urgent care clinics, hospice centers and sheriff’s departmentsk, according to the city.

Make4COVID says more than 21,000 pieces of personal protective equipment were delivered within the 35 days of the organization being operational.