For skilled nursing facilities, just one donated box of masks or gloves can help a medical staff be safer in working with their patients. Across the country, medical staff are facing a critical shortage of personal protective equipment, particularly face masks, amid the COVID-19 pandemic. As the number of local COVID-19 patients rise, medical supplies are quickly dwindling, putting front line responders and patients at risk. First 5 San Joaquin, in partnership with the Family Resource and Referral Centerand Leadership Stockton 2018, have partnered together to quickly call upon local businesses and residents alike to donate life-saving supplies.

With a stay at home order mandated by Gov. Gavin Newsom for an undetermined amount of time, several non-essential businesses have closed their doors, opting for telecommuting whenever possible. This means that PPE that many businesses may normally require are going unused, creating a perfect opportunity for donations.

“We are in need of gowns, gloves, and eye protective wear, and most of all, masks.It is critical that we keep our SNF medical personnel healthy and protected from the COVID-19 virus, because they are on the frontlines of this crisis,” said Lani Schiff-Ross, executive director of First 5 San Joaquin. “We’re hoping to receive donations from people who may have these items —dentists, schools,construction workers, and manicurists.”

While normal business hour phone lines are down, residents can help make a difference by posting about the donation drive on social media or calling their personal and professional contacts to urge them to donate any PPE possible.

“I’m so grateful for First 5, Family Resource and Referral Center,and Leadership Stockton 2018, who are taking the lead on this effort,” said Dr. Maggie Park, San Joaquin County Interim Public Health Officer.

Please contact Amanda Bauer at 209-461-2936  at Family Resource and Referral Center with any questions regarding donation drop-offs.