Free Mask Giveaway Scheduled for Saturday

SHENANGO VALLEY, Pa. — This weekend, residents can pick up free face masks courtesy of the Shenango Valley Chamber of Commerce and Let’s Make Masks, a Greenville-based mask-making group.

Let’s Mask Shenango Valley 2 is scheduled from 10 a.m. to noon July 11 at the Medical Equipment Recycling Program parking lot in Farrell, 707 Sharon New Castle Road; and at the chamber, 41 Chestnut Ave., Sharon.

Masks are free and available first come, first served until supplies are gone. The mask limit is two per household.

In May, Let’s Make Masks organized giveaways throughout the county, including one the chamber assisted with in Shenango Valley. The chamber specifically requested the group come back to the area for another giveaway amid concerns about surging COVID-19 numbers in the state, said its executive director, Sherris Moreira.

“We invited the Let’s Make Masks group to do a second drive-thru mask giveaway in the Shenango Valley this Saturday as a pre-emptive attempt to keep our county in green phase,” Moreira said in a release. “We just don’t want to see our county go backwards especially in light of our business community that’s finally been able to reopen.”

Event sponsors, Buhl Regional Health Foundation and the Community Foundation of Western PA and Eastern Ohio, are also funding the giveaway of boxes of nonsurgical masks for companies and organizations.

“Because of their generous donation, we’ll have more than 50 boxes for small businesses, churches and nonprofits, among others, in addition to at least a couple thousand made masks for individuals,” she said.

“In light of the impact of COVID-19, we have modified our grant process temporarily so we could meet some of the community needs of the virus and felt it was important to be flexible and assist those agencies on the front line who are helping to provide basic community needs,” said Mickey Gula, executive director of the Buhl Regional Health Foundation. “The distribution of masks is important because it not only protects the people wearing the masks but those around them and reduces the spread of this airborne virus.” 

The mask giveaway is led by Amy Lynn Clark, Sharon, who is helping get out the word and coordinating with Let’s Make Masks.

“Each and every one of these masks are made with love from people all over the county,” said Clark, community development manager for the American Cancer Society, Northeast region. “When the pandemic began, we were a little group of people just wanting to make a difference. And 25,000 masks and counting later, we are still just trying to make a difference in the communities that we call home.”

Members of Thrive Shenango Valley will join chamber staff, board and members as well as community members to volunteer for the event.

“These are unprecedented times and the chamber is just trying to meet the needs of our community,” Moreira said. “Now is the time to prioritize the health of our residents and help our business community to survive and thrive. We’re all in this together, and hopefully we’ll see a brighter picture on the other side for our community once we’re through this.” 

For more information, contact Sherris Moreira at 724 981 5880 or  sherris@svchamber.com, or Clark at 724 813 5130 or amylynn.clark@cancer.org

Copyright 2020 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.