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Resident Helen at The Viera Pays it Forward by Sewing Facemasks During COVID-19


In last week’s Silver Lining feature, we showcased our resident, Audrey, at The Brennity at Fairhope who recently crocheted over 100 afghan throws to donate to a local homeless shelter. This week, we have a similar story of a resident using her talents to give back to the community.

Meet Helen, a resident at The Viera in Corpus Christi, Texas. After being inspired by a “Pay It Forward” initiative in the community, she decided to put her sewing skills to work and made a goal to sew 100 facemasks!

Helen taught herself how to quilt and sew in the 1950s and was eager to put her sewing machine to good use again! One of our concierges, Trixie, had also taken the initiative to sew masks at home, so she was happy to share a mask pattern with Helen, which was all she needed to get started.

Since Helen has not been able to able to go out and purchase the needed materials for the masks, her niece has been ordering fabric and elastic and sending it to the community for Helen to use. When Helen needed a different kind of elastic, her brother was kind enough to send her more from California. “It became a family affair,” said Helen.

Our community’s Pay It Forward initiative reminded Helen of times where she and her husband had been on the receiving end of someone’s act of kindness. In fact, she vividly remembered two times in particular when she and her husband, Joe, had gone out for lunch only to find out that someone else had already gone up to cover the cost of their meal! That generosity made an impact on Helen, and now was her opportunity to pay it forward to someone else.

Helen has surpassed her goal of 100 masks and continues to sew them for anyone who needs them. She has also donated masks to the Salvation Army and is now sewing quilts with a few of our Assisted Living residents for the Salvation Army to distribute to families in need. We are inspired by her acts of selflessness and know that when people come together for the collective good, wonderful things can happen in a chain reaction. How can you “pay it forward” today?


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