FORT DUCHESNE, UTAH, DECEMBER 3, 2020: Makana Masks, the American manufacturer of innovative reusable safety masks, has donated 500 masks to the Ute Indian Tribe of Utah. Makana Masks has promised to make more masks available as needed. The masks are made of soft, durable silicone, and offer a more sustainable and effective alternative to disposable masks, protecting both the wearer and others from the spread of the novel coronavirus.

In recent weeks the Ute Indian Tribe and other communities in Utah and throughout the United States have experienced a surge in cases of COVID-19. The CDC has identified masks to be the most practical and effective way to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, in conjunction with social distancing and hand-washing. Makana Masks feature replaceable filters that are more than 99% effective at blocking particles of .3 microns in size, offering far more protection than cloth masks or paper surgical masks.

The founder of Makana Masks, David Mathews, identifies the donations of free masks to vulnerable communities as central to the mission of Makana Masks:

“I recognized the need for a safe, reusable mask when I was participating in medical missions in Southeast Asia, and I saw that men, women, and children alike were relying on paper surgical masks that weren’t affording them the protection they needed. It has always been one of my core goals with this company to make our masks available free to communities that need them. I’m delighted that we have been able to provide our masks to the Ute Indian Tribe, and we look forward to
continuing to donate masks to underserved communities around the country and the world.”

The connection to the Ute Indian Tribe came by way of Martha Macomber, the Educational Liaison between the University of Utah and the Ute Indian Tribe. She personally delivered 10 cases of Makana Masks to Eagleview Elementary School, Indian Health Services (IHS), and the Police Department on the Uintah and Ouray Reservation.

Martha reports, “Like much of rural America, this part of Utah is shifting into lockdown mode as they experience their first really significant surge of the virus. Makana Masks were received with appreciation from both the school system and the police department. Teachers and students enjoyed trying on the masks, and commented that they fit better and felt more protective than conventional masks. One teacher even made a learning opportunity out of the occasion, assigning her students to write an essay comparing and contrasting Makana Masks and other face coverings. We’ll continue to be in touch with the community to monitor the success of the program and to meet additional needs.”

Makana Masks have been made available for use by anyone on the Reservation requiring a level of protection beyond what cloth masks can provide. This includes all of the school nurses responsible for administering COVID-19 testing to students and staff. Until now, the school nurses have been using paper surgical masks as protection. While surgical masks can be effective in preventing spread of the virus from the wearer to others, they offer limited protection for the wearer. Makana Masks protect both the wearer and those around them.

Makana Masks and CEO David Mathews are committed to making a difference in the health and safety of communities like the Ute Tribe. Those in need are invited to contact Makana Masks directly.


Developed by a surgeon, Makana Masks are a state-of-the-art reusable face mask. Made of soft, comfortable silicone molded to the contours of the human face, Makana Masks are more comfortable, more effective, and more environmentally friendly than disposable masks. The masks come in two sizes, making them ideal for women and children who may be poorly served by one-size-fits-all masks. Four different filter options enable the wearer to customize their mask, balancing protection and breathability as circumstances require. Makana Masks can be special ordered in any color, pattern, or logo design, making them perfect for organizations wishing to provide branded masks to employees or team members.

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