The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released a letter Tuesday announcing their approval of more than 110 COVID-19 relief projects in 57 countries.
One project includes asking Utah church members to sew 5 million face masks and other protective equipment for frontline health-care workers.
The church’s Beehive Clothing facilities in Utah, Brazil, Mexico, Paraguay and the Philippines will temporarily shift their operations from manufacturing religious clothing — including the church’s garments and temple clothing — to instead sew face masks in all locations and gowns in Utah for those in need in the medical field.
Most of the relief projects “are done with trusted partners from humanitarian agencies, health ministries and hospitals, which allows us to use our resources — including food, hygiene products, personal protective equipment, medical equipment, cash and other commodities — in places where they can do the most good,” according to the letter.
Sharon Eubank, president of Latter-day Saint Charities and a member of the church’s Relief Society general presidency, said in a press release that church leaders are trying to work with governments and community leaders to find out what they need.
“We have mobilized the Relief Society and their families to help with some of these projects,” Eubank said.
In Utah, Relief Society leaders are organizing members to participate in a partnership between Latter-day Saint Charities, Intermountain Healthcare and University of Utah for the face mask sewing project, according to the press release.
“We invite our members to participate in these and other relief projects in their areas and communities as opportunities arise and as local government directives and personal circumstances allow,” the First Presidency letter stated.