Education, Health, Poole | Posted: Tuesday, April 21st, 2020 at 3:40 pm | return to news

Student inspires use of school 3D printers to make visors for frontline NHS staff

Much needed protective kit to keep front line health and care staff safe is being made by staff and students at St Edward’s School in Poole.

Will Neville-Jones with his first batch of protective visors
Will Neville-Jones with his first batch of protective visors

The project was sparked by a big-hearted student in Year 13, Will Neville-Jones, who, after learning how to make bands for face visors on his 3D printer at home, reached out to his school’s design and technology department for help completing the job.

He was allowed to borrow one of the school’s 3D printers, along with the materials he needed for the visor front panels, and completed his first batch of 10 face visors from his home.

Will delivered them to The Laurels and Pine Lodge care home in Oakdale, Poole on 16 April.

“I was aware that PPE was in short supply and, having seen in the news that people were using 3D printers to make it, I thought I could give it a try myself,” said Will. “I can’t make hundreds of face visors at home, but I’m really glad I can do something to help – and now that the school is getting behind the idea, we can do a lot more.”

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Inspired by his efforts, teachers from the school, which remains open for key worker and children who were vulnerable, are setting up shop in the design and technology department to continue the work, making scrubs bags, ear protectors to prevent skin damage from face masks, and more laser cut visors, all of which will be made available to the local NHS and care homes.

Head of Technology at St Edward’s School, Jane Morris, said, “We are all so deeply grateful for those on the front line who are risking their own health to care for others during this COVID-19 crisis, so to be able to do something for them feels really great.

“I am incredibly proud of Will for taking the initiative and spending his Easter break working to do something good for others, and we are so pleased to pick up the baton at school and do what we can as well.”

The manager at The Laurels and Pine Lodge care home, Ian Finnie, also said a big thank you to Will for his brilliant work adding, “This equipment is obviously in huge demand and supplies, especially within the care sector, are under pressure, so this act of kindness is all the more appreciated. To know that our community is supporting us and getting behind all its NHS and care workers at this time means an awful lot.”

Michael Antram, Headteacher said, “This is a brilliant initiative which makes me proud to be the head teacher of this school; proud of the technical knowhow of our staff and students, but especially proud of the generosity of spirit which saw those skills and resources directed towards this initiative. Well done to Will and the technology department.

“This equipment will directly support front line health and care staff and help keep them safe as they do their vital work – I can’t think of a better school project to work on right now.

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