The Story Behind ‘Operation We Can Sew It’

On March 18th, over a family group text we asked our sister/daughter, Dr. Jillian Ciocchetti, ‘how can we help?’

She’s a surgeon at Saint Joseph Hospital here in Denver and we knew the pressure was beginning to build. Her first request was for a reusable scrub cap. Having some master sewers in the group they jumped on it. This led to the beginnings of a design for a cloth face mask.

Simultaneously, another Saint Joseph’s physician, Dr. Kelly McMullen, was designing her own mask. She had been warned that there weren’t going to be enough masks and wanted to be proactive. Her design was almost identical so when she caught wind of Jillian’s project she reached out and they joined forces.

With a collaborative effort from a group of 10 friends and family members (including three doctors) the mask was designed, made, improved upon, re-designed, re-made (repeat)…a website was built, social media posts were made and Operation: We Can Sew It was born. Within one week of announcing the project we had almost 2,000 volunteers signed up to help sew.

On Friday, March 27th our specific pattern was approved by SCL Health to be used by their Associates in low-risk areas of their hospitals and other facilities.

This means we need a few thousand more volunteers to sew so we can fulfill the 40,000 cloth mask order for Saint Joseph Hospital and SCL Health.  In addition, we have already provided masks to Denver Area Emergency Rooms, Nursing Home Facilities, Cancer Centers, Hospice Facilities, Youth Shelters and more!

So please join us! It will take all of us working together to make this happen. Thank you in advance! We can’t wait for you to join the team. To sign up, please click here.


Dr. Jillian Ciocchetti of Saint Joseph Hospital.


Dr. Kelly McMullen of Saint Joseph Hospital.