WOODMERE, Ohio — One Northeast Ohio community is seeking to do its part in assisting local healthcare workers who are at the front line of the fight against the spread of COVID-19.

With the shortage of protective gear continuing to be a problem for hospital workers across the area, and nation, area residents Connie Sheetz Searby and Setefanie Shein reached out to Woodmere Mayor Ben Holbert to see what they could do to help. 

Woodmere and neighboring communities are home to dozens of dentists, orthodontists, spas, nail salons, elective surgery centers, veterinarians and manufacturers. Holbert agreed to have the Woodmere Fire Department used as a drop-off area for needed supplies like masks and gloves. 

Searby and Shein are soliciting businesses and medical operations to donate inventory sitting idle, and send the protective gear to area hospitals. Malcolm Walters DDS and Henderson Johnson DDS were first to contribute to the Woodmere Village initiative.

“Woodmere may be little geographically,” says Holbert, “But we want to show people we have a big heart and we can make a big difference in combating COVID 19. We need to take care of the people who take care of our people.”

To maintain the six-foot rule for social distancing, donors are asked to drop unopened boxes of protective gear at the Woodmere Fire Department door at 27899 Chagrin Boulevard. Contributors can use the intercom system to alert firefighters that a donation has arrived. Woodmere Village firefighters will retrieve the equipment and later make them available to nearby medical centers. Boxes should be marked with what they contain, the quantity and the donor’s name. 

While donations will be ongoing, Holbert hopes businesses will donate quickly to build a stockpile to fill the gap while manufacturers increase production of protective gear. Please email all questions to coverforcaregivers@gmail.com.

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