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How Toronto youth are making a positive impact amid the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced schools all across Canada, with students and teachers forced to resort to online learning techniques in order to complete the school year.

However, this has not stopped Canada’s empowered youth to use this extra time at home to make a positive impact in the pandemic.

Presenting masksON, a student-run organization connecting handmade cotton masks with facilities and frontline workers that are in need of them.

Founded by grade 11 student Cate Balasubramanian, she works alongside her school’s peers, Bhavya Malik and Anirudh Ram-Mohanram, who was inspired to create this organization in order to respond to the Toronto’s need for PPE, and the need for youth to make a difference during this crisis.

Their day-to-day operations include sewing masks, reaching out to local businesses who may be interested in helping out, mailing out masks to local hospitals, and getting in contact with individuals who may be interested in helping out with the organization or need materials in order to sew masks.

masksON hopes to help the world cope with this crisis with tangible actions, in the form of masks and support. Furthermore, they also want hospitals to know they have support from people in their communities.

As for other teens, here’s what the team recommends to other youth looking to help out during the pandemic.

  1. Youth should ensure that they are following social distancing protocols and that they are taking care of their mental and physical health.

  2. If interested, they can reach out to organizations, such as maskON, who will equip them with the necessary resources to help out.

  3. A big help would be to encourage all teens to spread positivity in times when the digital world is filled with negativity, since it allows them to become aware of the opportunities that exist for them currently.

Up to now, the organization has 27 active volunteers, has donated 367 masks, and has even been featured by BlogTO, a prominent Toronto-based news entertainment outlet. But it doesn’t stop there - they would love to have more passionate and driven youth become part of their initiative. If anyone is interested in helping out masksON, feel free to contact admin@maskson.ca!

Pictured below (in order): Cate, founder of masksON, and Bhavya and Anirudh, execs.

Cate, Bhavya, and Anirudh are 3 hardworking and dedicated individuals, and their organization is spreading positivity and PPE across Toronto.

Article Contributors: Asima Hudani, Rahma Osman, Olivia Ye