Back in March and April of 2020, the need for face masks outpaced the supply as most face masks were going to healthcare providers and their patients. As a result of massive demand for Milwaukee area residents and the fact that many Milwaukeeans could not get the life-saving masks because of the nationwide shortage, Mike and Loretta Kryshak of Rebel converting donated the first one Million masks.
Rebel Converting Mask Up Milwaukee
On April 13, 2020, Mike Kryshak and Ignight Change launched the #MaskUpMKE initiative, which began as a social awareness campaign aimed at halting COVID-19 by focusing on washing hands, social distancing, and wearing face masks. The movement encourages residents to be safe whenever they leave home.
WISNTV-12 STORY ON MASK UP MKE
In early July Alderwoman Marina Dimitrijevic of the 14th District, proposed legislation that would require Milwaukee residents to wear masks while in public places. Staying true to their cause, the Kryshaks and Rebel Converting invested in the mask mandate campaign while also pledging materials to make up an additional one Million masks.
MANDATEMASKMKE.Com Helped Push Legislation – Watch Video above.
On July 13, 2020, the Milwaukee Common Council adopted the ordinance requiring mandatory face mask coverings in public spaces, indoors and outdoors. The ordinance went into effect on Thursday, July 16, 2020. Mike Kyrshak accompanied alderwoman, Marina Dimitrijevic, Mayor Tom Barrett, and health commissioner, Jeanette Kowalik for the bill signing press conference. Although the adoption of this mandatory face mask ordinance was a win for Milwaukeeans, the mandate created an even higher demand for face masks. As of this time, the Kryshaks and Rebel Converting had already given out three million masks and had agreed to supply the materials for one million more if needed.
Rebel Converting Masks
A Milwaukee-based manufacturer of hospital-grade disinfectant wipes, Rebel Converting first committed to donating their fabric to make 1,000,000 no-sew face mask kits. They then turned over their production process from making wipes to converting the treated material into kits that make very quick and effective face masks. However, not long after the first offer of fabric, on April 20, Mike and Loretta Kryshak donated even more material. This time, there were enough kits to produce 2.5 million.
The masks are made from the same melt-blown polypropylene used in Rebel Converting’s hospital-grade disinfectant wipes. Rebel Converting and #MaskUpMKE offer these masks as kits or ready-to-use face masks at no charge to the public.
Recruiting the Community
Rebel Converting and the Kryshaks, along with Ignite Change, were instrumental in recruiting nonprofit organizations and other area companies to get involved in the #MaskUpMKE campaign.
These organizations include the MCW (Medical College of Wisconsin), North Shore Bank, Neighbor Express-MKE, the Greater Milwaukee Foundation, the Zilber Family Foundation, the United Way of Greater Milwaukee and Waukesha County, Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity, Fiserv Forum, and the Milwaukee Bucks.
“The support we’ve received from the community and organizations who truly care about making a difference is outstanding.” offered Mike Kryshak.
Rebel Converting and Kryshaks Doing Even More
In light of their current and past nonprofit advocacy, Loretta Kryshak has announced the formation of Rebel Reform, the Social Outreach Arm of Rebel Converting. Rebel Reform will continue their work with a number of nonprofits in S.E. Wisconsin and research others where their support offers the greatest impact. In the next few weeks, Rebel Reform will be highlighting “Rebels with a Cause,” the groups that they support and why they choose to support them.
Face Mask Kit by Rebel Converting
About Rebel Converting
In addition to their Saulkville location, Rebel Converting recently purchased a building in Milwaukee that will serve as their headquarters. Before making masks, Rebel Converting’s focus was converting giant rolls of advanced nonwoven fabric into disinfecting wipes that fit inside canisters, buckets, and dispensers. These allow end-users to clean everything from operating rooms to shopping carts. Rebel Converting sources major industrial brands and doesn’t sell their product under their brand label.