MIAMI (WSVN) - A South Florida Goodwill is working hard to make sure Old Glory looks glorious this Fourth of July.
Goodwill’s Flag Center in Alapattah creates about 600 flags a day for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and commercial use.
Every Old Glory star, stripe and canton is made with 100-year-old embroidery machines and Goodwill workers.
“Goodwill’s mission is to train employees–people with disabilities,” said Goodwill’s vice-president of Marketing and Development Lourdes De La Mata-Little, “and so it’s interesting that we make the country’s symbol of independence when the very people who seek goodwill and seek their services are in their own way seeking their own independence.”
Starting with 4.5-inch stars and ending with a 9-foot long symbol of freedom, every flag is made to perfection and inspected thoroughly before shipping out, with no loose threads or pulls.
“It starts with a little piece and goes out, and it comes together,” said Goodwill employee Joseph Nunez. “It’s like a puzzle.”
“They have to be perfect because we’re talking about the American flag,” said Goodwill employee Iris Perez. “It’s important, it’s for soldiers, and it’s a flag that we respect.”
These flag makers are proud of their craft, especially on America’s birthday.
“On the Fourth of July, where we celebrate this country’s independence, they are particularly proud,” said De La Matta-Little. “Even though it’s a small part behind the scenes, they were part of making that story come alive.”
About 900 employees help in making these flags. Ninety-six percent of them are people with disabilities.
“No matter where I see the flag, I say, ‘Did I make that flag. Did I put my hands on it?'” said Perez.
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