A student-led volunteer group has been fundraising and helping provide protective facemasks and face shields for medical professionals and Tri-Valley organizations.

New Nest, an independent club formed last year by Alexis Huang, now a senior at Dublin High School, and Brighton Young, now a senior at Amador Valley High in Pleasanton, has raised more than $6,000 to purchase surgical masks and materials to make handmade masks and face shields.

The club’s original mission was to help student-aged immigrants adapt to their new lives, including help with academics and integration into American youth culture.

But with impact of the coronavirus pandemic, Huang said New Nest also wanted to do something for the broader community.

Since last spring, the club has donated more than 3,000 reusable, handmade cloth facemasks to organizations such as Tri-Valley Haven, the Dublin Senior Center, Kaiser Permanente, and Norcal Ambulances. 

They also purchased surgical-grade masks and produced 3-D printed face shields for medical facilities, including Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Oakland, California, and Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn, New York. 

Recently, New Nest has also been working with another student-led nonprofit, the San Ramon-based Promoting Leadership in Aspiring Youth (PLAY) Foundation, which has donated another $2,400 worth of facemasks and face shields to Pleasanton Partnerships in Education Foundation, Kaiser Permanente, and Tri-Valley Haven.  

Earlier this year, New Nest members, led by then-Amador Valley senior Ervin Young, now a computer science major at the University of California, Riverside, purchased computer parts and built PCs to be donated to low-income families through the Pleasanton Unified School District to aid in distance learning during the pandemic.