Donate Delaware, United Way of Delaware work to keep bringing PPE where needed
An effort to help nonprofits find PPE last year during the COVID pandemic is expanding its scope.
Many nonprofits struggled to find and afford personal protective equipment at the height of the pandemic.
So some Delaware businessmen responded with Donate Delaware, a hub for getting face masks, gowns and medical gloves to those that needed them.
Donate Delaware co-founder and president Dave Tiberi says they’re now partnering with the United Way of Delaware (UWDE) and others to find ways to continue that work.
“I would say the big word here is partnerships,” said Tiberi. "Right now, we have pharmaceutical companies here in Delaware that literally have geared up and they’ve given us hundreds of gallons of hand sanitizer and no charge to make sure that the Delaware needs are met.”
United Way of Delaware’s community engagement director Tierra Fair says its an effort that’s proven successful
“We have helpers who have really risked their safety during COVID-19 and stepped up to the plate," said Fair. "And so United Way of Delaware and Donate Delaware have collaborated to really make sure that nonprofits were kept safe and received the PPE that they needed.”
Tiberi says Donate Delaware handed out 61,000 pieces of PPE for free to nonprofits and schools last year. And he notes, while the urgency for these items has diminished, there is still a need to address.
So, in addition to helping schools and nonprofits meet their current PPE needs, both agencies plan to present nonprofits and schools with a working model for bulk PPE purchasing and storage, in the event COVID variants create a new surge in cases.
“Early on, Dr Bob Andrzejewski, retired superintendent from the Red Clay School District - came on board. And he has helped navigate that," said Tiberi. "He’s worked with the school district leadership throughout the state to make sure that the gaps (for PPE) are filled. And so we’re pretty confident; I would have to say that we’re one of the few states that have their act together.”
Donate Delaware is still looking for supplies and anyone with some to donate can contact the group through its website.