Kevin Short, general manager of Anza Electric Cooperative, presented the first contribution of personal protective equipment to staff at the Temecula Valley Hospital Friday, April 10.
“We were able to collect 85 sewn masks, 150 disposable surgical masks, two N95 masks, 2,700 gloves and nine sewn surgical gowns,” Short said.
Personal protective equipment is clothing, helmets, goggles, masks, face shields or special garments designed to protect the wearer’s body from injury or infection. Supplies of PPE are well below demand, resulting in global, national and regional shortfalls.
“When I became aware of the pending shortage of protective equipment at Temecula Valley Hospital, I asked the community to help produce sewn face masks,” Short said. “Later, the hospital stated a need for face shields and surgical gowns as well. These were contributed by several members of the community.”
The AEC sponsored a mask-making drive, beginning in March. In coordination with Temecula Valley Hospital, the small member-owned electric utility asked all area residents who were able to sew to consider donating time and effort to make face masks during the COVID-19 pandemic.
AEC said that making and donating critical protective equipment during this time is in the best interest of the entire community.
“I want to thank everyone that has contributed and is continuing to participate, but most especially the Anza Thimble Club for everything they do. The need is growing,” Short said.
His concern for the health of AEC staff and the community as a whole is well known. The cooperative’s involvement with the American Heart Association’s local Heart and Stroke Walks and resulting fundraising have been ongoing for several years. Employees of the utility have been gifted with Fitbits to track important health and activity markers, including heart rate, quality of sleep and the number of steps walked.
The cooperative said their principle of “Concern for Community” extends to those members of the greater region that provide services such as health care. The AEC intends to continue working toward fulfilling this need as long as it exists, Short said.
“Thank you to our members for making our community a safe place to live and for always being ready to help when needed,” Short said.
A sewing pattern and instructional video can be found at www.vimeo.com/400118073/8a7eb657ab.
Diane Sieker can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.