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More than 1,000 gown kits handed out at ICCC

Area volunteers are now stitching together thousands of protective gowns to be used in nursing homes during the COVID-19 pandemic as a result of a unique partnership between them and prison inmates.

Inmates at the Fort Dodge Correctional Facility working for Iowa Prison Industries cut the fabric for the gowns. That fabric was distributed at Iowa Central Community College Monday.

About 1,000 gown kits were handed out in about two hours, according to Jim Kersten, the college’s vice president for external relations and government affairs.

Each kit contains material for 12 gowns, so Monday’s distribution alone will produce 12,000 of them.

Kersten said gown kits will be distributed from 9 a.m. to noon each day through Saturday at the Career Education Building.

Completed gowns are to be returned to the Career Education Building. They will be cleaned in the laundry at UnityPoint Health — Trinity Regional Medical Center before being given nursing homes.

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