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Free PPE distribution to child care providers

27 January 2021 |

On Thursday, January 21, 2021, from 5-7 pm, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) was distributed to 20 child care businesses that serve Rochester’s children. Sponsored by the University of Rochester’s Committee on Equity and Racial Justice and Children’s Institute, in partnership with the Child Care Council and the Child Care Task Force hosted by the United Way, the distribution was a drive up and socially distanced event at the Child Care Council on Blossom Road.  

The PPE logistics and distribution team included: Aaron Barnes; Jeff Pier; Hector Santiago; Stephanie Fitzgerald; Diane Trentini; Terry Hartmann; Ann Marie White, her sons Alex and Owen, and her cousin Alex. You couldn't ask for a more diligent and caring team.

The child care providers warmly received the packages, and each was thanked for the powerful and essential work they are doing for our children and our community. They responded in kind and were very thankful for these much-needed free supplies, reiterating how difficult it has been to obtain them.

The preparation, sign-up, and waiver processes were completed ahead of time, and the morning started early for Aaron and his inventory collection team. Kudos to his wonderful organization, planning, and very cool transportation. The vehicle was filled to the roof with boxes and boxes of supplies ... face shields, respirators, protective gowns, gloves, sanitizer, masks ... so many items that make a real difference in keeping everyone safe and stopping the virus from spreading.

Aaron arrived at the Child Care Council and the receiving team sprang into action. Jeff and Hector had graciously provided coffee and doughnuts for team sustenance, and magically the mix of boxes made their way into the bay, and 20 piles of supplies, with an inventory checklist for each for consistency, rose from the initial chaos. Aaron stayed until each package was complete, and the Child Care Council added the finishing touch with a fire safety kit. We thank the facility owner, superintendent, and other tenants for their support of our efforts.

The distribution team got to work as the providers started arriving shortly before 5 pm. The drive-up process worked well, and the distribution team efficiently loaded up SUVs, mini-vans, and compact cars alike - playing Tetris and fitting the boxes and bags full of supplies into each vehicle. It was so nice to greet each provider and hear how things are going for their children - and for them. Blessings were exchanged and each went off for the evening with a full vehicle and renewed energy to keep fighting COVID.

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