In a Time of Need, a Rush to Donate PPE

Jodi Schaefer with donated supplies

As the COVID-19 outbreak escalated, Jodi Schaefer, Manager of the Babson Science Laboratories wanted to help the response effort in whatever way possible.

They just needed to figure out how, when, and where. The answer: donating personal protective equipment (PPE).

Wiljeana Glover Wiljeana Glover was working on some ideas within Babson’s new Global Healthcare Entrepreneurship Center Global Healthcare Entrepreneurship Center ,” said Schaefer. “She was curious to know if there was any way through the BOW collaboration if we could have the capacity to do testing.”

Though it was ultimately decided that providing testing was not within the collaborators’ capabilities, providing much-needed PPE to hospitals and medical workers was.

“We were hearing media reports that Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) was and still is in short supply,” said Schaefer.

After filling out a survey indicating the willingness and available resources to help, Schaefer received a phone call from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA).

“I immediately inventoried my supplies, reached out to Joanne Pratt at Olin College to see if we could pool our resources, and came up with a decent collection,” said Schaefer.

Pratt and Schaefer filled Schaefer’s car with all their available supplies and rushed off to a local MEMA Donations Management Branch. There, MEMA is collecting, sorting, and distributing supplies to local agencies.

“We donated about 65 boxes of gloves, 100 pairs of used goggles and 40 pairs of new goggles to MEMA,” said Schaefer.

At times like this, sometimes the best ways to help are the simplest.

“Jodi has always been incredibly thoughtful and entrepreneurial in her own way, and was quick to act,” said Vikki Rodgers, chair, Math and Science Division at Babson College.

With the donation complete, Schaefer has one message for all, in and out of the Babson community: “Respect the rules of social distancing and wash your hands.”

Posted in Adapting, Together

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