Caraga FabLab produces face shields for COVID-19 frontliners
BUTUAN CITY, March 30 — Seeing the need to help the communities be safe as the country is put into a state of calamity because of the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, Fabrication Laboratory (FabLab) Caraga is printing protective gears for the frontliners.
FabLab Caraga, one of the Shared Service Facility (SSF) projects of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), has started producing face shields last March 23 and continues to donate more to the different agencies in the region.
“This initiative is a collaborative effort of the FabLab community in the entire country as a means of support to the real heroes of this crisis, our frontliners,” said Engr. Isagani Roma, FabLab Caraga manager.
As of press time, the laboratory has already printed a total of 220 protective gears using three dimensional (3D) printing and aims to reach the production rate of 200 every day as they shift their production by utilizing a laser cutting machine.
The laboratory has already provided face shields for the Philippine Medical Association, city government of Butuan, DTI, Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Philippine Information Agency (PIA) and Caraga State University (CSU).
Roma said that they would willingly accept written requests from various agencies and organizations as well as financial and material donations.
“The laboratory is self-sustaining so we call for donations so we can replenish our materials and produce more,” Roma added.
DTI Caraga has already donated acrylic sheets, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) sheets, and industrial glue that are needed for the production of the face shields.
FabLab Caraga is a space for innovation by providing coaching, mentoring, and access to digital fabrication tools.
Through CSU, the laboratory seeks to develop pool of designers to assist micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in product design and development.
In 2017, DTI Caraga provided assistance worth P12 million for the purchase of two units of 3D printers, laser cutter and engraver, wood milling machine, computer numerical control (CNC) machine for metal crafts, and large format printers.
Nationwide, SSF is a project of DTI that targets to give MSMEs access to better technology and sophisticated equipment to become more competitive in the field (DTI-Caraga/PIA-Caraga)