We are inundated with negative news around COVID-19. From the stock market to escalating case counts to concerns about hospital capacity, ventilators and testing kits, it’s with us daily. If you’re anything like me, you’re in search of the good news throughout each day – positive things that we can talk about.
The 2020 pandemic is a crisis, no doubt. But in the midst of the storm, there is sunshine breaking through the clouds. These rays of sun have the power to uplift us. They are the acts of human kindness that still prevail and bond us together to make us stronger. They are community-focused and will help see us through.
I’m hearing stories about companies that are shifting gears and getting creative to provide much-needed aid to those who are most vulnerable in this pandemic. In many instances, they are putting compassion above corporate coffers. In the coming weeks, I’ll be compiling these stories and sharing them with you.
The potential sheer magnitude of the pandemic has been top of the news. The concern is that, if not slowed, there simply will not be not enough ventilators, respirators and personal protective equipment to handle a widespread outbreak. Enter automakers, television producers, and furniture manufacturers.
This week Ford announced its partnership with 3M and GE Healthcare to scale-up production of ventilators and air-purifying respirators. GM and Tesla have also stepped up to the plate to repurpose their facilities to increase production of essential medical equipment. This solves a huge need and keeps employees working.
Even Hollywood is getting in on the action. With production temporarily halted, TV shows such as Chicago Med, Grey’s Anatomy, The Resident, and many others are donating their warehouses of prop supplies to area hospitals. These supplies include much needed gowns, masks, gloves and more. At some point, these props will need to be replenished or there’ll be a bunch of fake doctors and nurses bustling around the fake ER in street clothes, but for now, they’re in the hands of real medical staff.
Lastly, suburban Chicago outdoor furniture company, NorthCape, has put its patio business on hold and shifted production and distribution to hospital-approved gowns and masks. “We heard people were asked to bring bandannas or scarves to work. We thought that’s crazy, and we figured we could do better than that,” said Tom Murray, NorthCape president.
These are just a few examples of how creative thinking and working together can help us get through these turbulent times. If you have other examples, please share them. We all could use some rays of sunshine right about now.