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'I wanted to help them': 11-year-old boy who created ear protectors for mask wearers needs third 3D printer to keep up with demand

Ottawa's Alex Pound already had to get a second 3D printer when demand was increasing. But now the demand is so high, he needs a third printer and is raising money through a GoFundMe campaign.
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Printdemic logo. Courtesy of

Wearing a mask all day wrapped around your ears is no one’s idea of comfortable — so just think of the healthcare workers who struggle with that feeling everyday. 

That’s what 11-year-old Alex Pound thought, so he created Printdemic, a company that makes 3D printed mask straps, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

And so far he’s donated close to 800 of those ear protectors to healthcare providers, longterm care facility staff, the Canadian Armed Forces, business owners and individuals across Canada, as well as some in the U.S.

“I felt like it was a thing that needed to be done because there are workers that work really hard and I wanted to help them,” Pound said.

But the demand just keep growing.

“It’s been going pretty well,” he said. “I have a bunch of orders so I needed to get a second 3D printer.”

And he got that second printer through a GoFundMe he had set up from before.

But that wasn’t enough. 

Pound has so many orders, he can’t keep up with them — so he now needs a third 3D printer. In fact, he has orders for almost 3,000 more.

So Pound started another GoFundMe to help raise money for that third printer he’s been needing. He has set a $1,500 goal, and as of Sunday morning has already raised $1,010 through 21 donors. 

This, he says, will help shorten his growing waitlist. 

And they’ve been popular among his customers.

“There’s a bunch of people that like them and have come back to us saying they’re comfortable,” Pound said. “They said they can’t go to work without it.”

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