Coronavirus news roundup: Delaware business owner secures masks; Sallie Mae’s Food Bank donation; DRBA’s offers protective gear; Food distribution by Schell Bros.

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Delaware is among the states that will receive masks, thanks to the work of a local business owner

A truckload of about 600,000 ear-loop face masks are slated to arrive at the D&S Warehouse near Newark.

U.S. Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) joined longtime friend and protective garment distributor George Gianforcaro in accepting the delivery Tuesday morning. 

The delivery is one of four shipments of protective masks that will fill orders in states such as Delaware, Louisiana, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, and Utah.

Gianforcaro anticipates receiving future shipments of N95 protective masks, COVID-19 test kits, isolation gowns, face shields, goggles, respirators, and related PPE.

Gianforcaro, a longtime Delawarean, whose wife is a nurse at Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children, said the shipments were made possible due to a long-standing relationship with his overseas distributor.

Gianforcaro sells and distributes clothing designed to protect against chemical, biological, and particulate radioactive contamination. All products, which are FDA approved, are checked upon arrival for quality control.

Last week, Sen. Coons and his constituent services team connected Gianforcaro with the offices of both Delaware Gov. John Carney and U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.).

Food Bank gets $200,000 from Sallie Mae Fund

The Sallie Mae Fund, the charitable arm of Sallie Mae, today announced a $200,000 contribution to the Food Bank of Delaware. Sallie Mae is based near Wilmington.

This contribution is part of a $1 million emergency aid grant The Sallie Mae Fund is providing to food banks in states home to Sallie Mae facilities and where the company’s nearly 2,000 employees live, work, and serve. Food banks in Indiana, Massachusetts, Utah, and Virginia will also receive funding from The Sallie Mae Fund.

“We are so thankful that Sallie Mae is assisting our efforts to make sure vulnerable Delaware populations have access to food during this crisis,” said Food Bank of Delaware spokeswoman Kim Turner. “For thousands of low-income Delawareans accessing enough food is difficult during normal circumstances. The public health crisis is making food access even more stressful and worrisome. The Food Bank of Delaware’s network of partner organizations stand ready to assist our community’s most vulnerable.”

The contributions to the area food banks will support each organization’s on-going emergency response efforts to combat food insecurity for families in our local communities who have been affected by COVID-19. Food banks across the country are on the front lines and showing extraordinary adaptability in the face of an ever-changing landscape.

DRBA donates masks and gloves

The Delaware River and Bay Authority  announced that the bi-state agency has donated 4,000 N95 respirator masks and 2,000 pairs of nitrile disposable gloves in an effort to help the medical community and first-responders meet its increased need for protective equipment amid the COVID-19 pandemic in Delaware and New Jersey.

The Delaware Healthcare Association, which plans to distribute the masks and nitrile gloves to hospitals in all three of Delaware’s counties, received 2,000 N95 respirator masks and 1,000 pair of nitrile disposable gloves while 500 masks and 250 pair of nitrile gloves were provided health care organizations and first responders in southern New Jersey.

The DRBA has equipped employees in the various maintenance and toll functions with these masks and gloves in the past.  In addition, the bi-state agency increased its stockpile of personal protective equipment for flu pandemic preparedness following the N1H1 Swine Flu outbreak. That stockpile made the donation possible, according to a release.

Schell Brothers ‘Kudos’ distributing food

Schell Brothers, a new home builder based in  Rehoboth Beach,  announced plans to give back to the local Delaware community facing the coronavirus crisis.

Schell will work through its Project Kudos charitable arm. 

The bus will be stocked with groceries for in-need families. Mountaire, has partnered with Schell Brothers to provide chicken for families.

Families will receive reusable giveaway packs stocked with essentials such as rice, beans, soup, cereal, and other supplies. All items have been safely packed for distribution and the bus will be on the road with a  limited number of persons handing out food directly to neighborhoods in both the Indian River and Cape Henlopen School District.

The bags will also contain chalk, coloring books, Project Kudos notebooks and pencils in an effort to help school-aged children who will be out of school through May 15th.

Over the past year and a half, The Kudos Bus visited schools, festivals and businesses to support the Project Kudos mission – “to spread positive vibes.”

Project Kudos and Schell Brothers will provide an updated list of neighborhood visits on their Facebook Page and the Project Kudos website.

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