Protective gear rolls in for groups' drive in NW
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Protective gear rolls in for groups' drive in NW

May 23, 2023

ROGERS -- Spas and nail salons donated masks. Shoe covers and disposable overalls came from a pest-control company.

"I hope this helps," reads a note left with a donation in Fayetteville.

Volunteers spent Thursday morning gathering donated personal protection equipment for emergency responders as the covid-19 pandemic continues.

The Northwest Arkansas Covid-19 Task Force, in collaboration with Sheep Dog Impact Assistance, started a community drive last week asking for cleaning supplies and personal protective items for public-safety workers.

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The drive was able to net 164 N95 masks, gloves, sanitizer, wipes, face shields and other items.

They will be donated today to emergency management departments in Benton and Washington counties. The supplies were collected from drop-off locations in Rogers, Springdale and Fayetteville.

The task force is made up of school, city, county, state, fire, police and first-responder representatives, according to a news release. Sheep Dog is a national nonprofit organization based in Rogers. The group's mission is to engage military and emergency responders through participation in disaster response missions and outdoor adventures, according to its website.

The emergency management department in each county will receive 82 N95 masks, six boxes of latex gloves and four boxes of polyethylene aprons, along with other items.

Lance Nutt, president and founder of Sheep Dog, said people can continue to make donations, and the group plans to make another public push for donations next week.

There is limited public contact at the drop-off locations, according to the task force. Donations should include a note of what was donated and the name of the donor so contributors can be recognized.

Nutt is grateful people are going into their "personal stash" to donate masks, sanitizer and other items.

"We have been very pleased with the donations, which shows that Northwest Arkansas is a very philanthropic area," he said.

Fayetteville Fire Chief Brad Hardin said donations at his station included gowns, gloves, face shields and masks.

"It was all kind of items," he said. "It was a good outpouring."

Gloves, surgical masks, a few N95 masks, shoe covers and disposable overalls were left in Springdale, Fire Chief Mike Irwin said.

"We received quite a bit of stuff," Irwin said. "It's out there. It's just everyone pitching in."

Metro on 04/10/2020

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