Keiki Heroes recognizes the challenges all front-line workers face. As educators increase in-person instruction, the need for safety protective gear and preventive measures are in high demand. Our community partnerships are working to alleviate some of this burden by providing the following FREE resources to educators.
QUALITY ECO-FRIENDLY MASKS
Keiki Heroes sponsor, Hawaii STEM Community Care (HiStemCare), has developed the Hi600 Mask, a reusable mask made from hospital-grade blue sterilization wrap material which has passed qualitative fit-testing where it performed better than cotton masks*. In addition to the quality materials, Hi600 is environmentally and locally conscientious, utilizing recycled H600 (polypropylene) fabric donated by the Hilo Medical Center Foundation and made on Hawaii Island by Sew Da Kine.
COVID-19 can be transmitted through aerosols – tiny airborne droplets exhaled by a person and can linger in the air for up to 3 hours. This can be problematic in indoor spaces that are not well-ventilated as potentially infectious aerosols can be concentrated, increasing the transmission risk. Measuring the amount of CO2 in a room can help determine if an occupied space is poorly ventilated. People exhale CO2 – a high CO2 concentration reading suggests that ‘stale air’ is present.
- TIP: CO2 concentration in outdoor air is around 420 parts per million (PPM). A concentration of over 800 PPM for indoor air has been suggested as a cause for concern.
- TIP: Monitor CO2 concentration in a space when it is occupied and at different times of the day.
Measuring CO2 can be done using commercially available CO2 monitors. Educators can monitor the CO2 levels within their classrooms to understand the quality of the air. If CO2 rises to concerning levels, they can take measures to mitigate the potential risk, e.g.,
- Open doors and windows
- Install ventilation fans
- Provide covered spaces for meeting outdoors
- Allow for transition spaces if classes meet back-to-back in small classrooms
CO2 monitors can be purchased online (Amazon.com is a site) for about $120. HiStemCare strives to ensure that each school has access to at least one monitor. It has distributed a limited supply to some schools and is seeking funds so that it can equip every school. It encourages PTAs to consider purchasing these devices for their schools.
To learn more about how CO2 monitors can help identify potential problem areas, contact HiStemCare.
KEIKI EDUCATION MATERIALS
Keiki Heroes has produced a ‘back-to-school’ resource center highlighting materials that are FREE for educators to use in their early-education classrooms. These materials educate children about healthy practices, such as washing hands, social distance and mask wearing through fun and identifiable Hawaiian characters. Share and find additional Keiki Heroes resources at website, Facebook and Instagram channels.
- Keiki Heroes Pledge – encourage keiki to do what they can to stay safe and protect their ‘ohana, friends and adults who care for them.
- Keiki Question Videos – Experts answer questions that keiki in our community presented about COVID and what they are curious about.
- Keiki Heroes Activity Books – Available in English, ‘Ōlelo Hawai’i and 13 other languages providing an engaging way for keiki to learn and internalize positive behaviors.
- Keiki Heroes Ambassadors – Program that promotes leadership in older keiki and ‘opio to model and teach positive behaviors.