With COVID-19 case numbers fluctuating during this time, every business has had to reassess how they operate. While LeKAC has been fortunate enough to remain operational, some of us weren’t that lucky. Extra precautions have been put in place, some businesses had to temporarily close, others moved online, and more. Most importantly, our frontline workers – those coming into contact with the virus on a daily basis and risking their own health for the general population – saw depleted stock of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment). There was a general outcry for donations and, of course, our team wanted to do its part!
Now, donations can come in many different forms – monetary, itemised, information, manpower. We wrote 2 past blog posts about COVID19 and its relation with packaging components:
- COVID-19 and Packaging: What You Need to Know
- How to Handle Packaging During the Coronavirus Pandemic
Aside from the supply of accurate information, LeKAC wanted to donate PPE to our beloved frontline workers. But how should we go about this?
We knew we wanted to help make a difference in the community, but first we needed to find out what was actually needed by our frontline workers. Through our research, these are the most commonly accepted items as of this moment:
- face masks
- face shields
- surgical gowns
- protective medical goggles
- headbands and scrub caps with buttons (to increase comfort for those wearing face masks for long periods of time)
Furthermore, it may be surprising to realise that hospital workers are not the only frontline workers out there. Long term health care centres and retirement homes are also in grave need of PPE as their number of cases are escalating.
In order to maximise our reach, face masks and shields seemed like the best options. Our goal with this campaign was to help as many people in our community as possible, in different fields of work.
Next obstacle to tackle: How could we use our products and turn them into donations to workers? The answer was simple – donate profits from orders towards the purchase of PPE.
In order to get our PPE donations to frontline workers as quickly as possible, we effectively put together various advertisements in a short period of time. We were able to determine which industries would most benefit from our custom packaging, and created advertisements for those companies.
One of the most impacted industries during this time is the restaurant industry. With no dine-in service available, owners were forced to amp up take-out and delivery orders, or consider shutting down temporarily. As this pandemic was unprecedented, many businesses were left with low packaging inventory, which was necessary for their latest ventures.
Paper bags and other paper products proved to be the most popular option when it came to take-out orders, so that’s what we focused on. Through Facebook and Instagram, we were able to spread our information about COVID-19, packaging, and advertisements over a period of 2 months. With businesses reopening, we ended our campaign with hopes that things go back to normal soon. Many businesses were eager to help frontline workers within the community, and we saw an increase in orders to support them!
With the campaign underway, our research resumed to determined where our donations would be most useful. Although we had a lot of different options during this time, we finally settled on the following 6 facilities:
- Hôpital Chinois de Montréal – offers a wide range of health programs and services to the South East Asian community, specifically seniors who need extended long-term care
- McGill University Health Centre – a bilingual academic health network which provides hospitalization, complex surgeries, emergency care and specialized treatment for the residents of Montreal and Quebec
- Markhaven Home for Seniors – a non-profit long term care nursing home in Markham
- Better Living Health and Community Services – provides essential services that assist seniors and disabled adults
- West Park Healthcare Centre Foundation – able to continue providing its patients specialized rehabilitative and complex care after a life‐altering illness or injury
- Mon Sheong Richmond Hill Long Term Care Centre – provides programs and services to the elderly and to the young in response to their individual needs within the Chinese community
After contacting these facilities, we set up drop-off times and maintained social distancing measures to limit any potential spread. The donations were all received exceptionally well and it really made us realise how much the community can have an impact.
None of this would be possible without the overwhelming support from our amazing clients. Some existing, some new; all appreciated immensely. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to the following companies for allowing us to make the PPE donations to the above facilities:
Overall, with the help of our clients, we were able to donate over 6,000 face masks/shields to frontline workers.
However, is that really enough? Although many businesses are starting to reopen, the risk is still high. We will continue to donate to relevant facilities as long as we can, and hope you are able to as well.
If you’re looking for advice on how to donate, or who to donate to, feel free to reach out! After rigorous research, we found many resources and facilities in need. While we cannot help every single one of them, we’re hoping that, as a community, we will be able to do what we can.
Contact us for more information on how you can start your own campaign! We’re all in this together – stay safe folks!