FRESNO – Bank of America is partnering with six Fresno and Tulare County nonprofits to provide personal protective equipment (PPE), specifically, 174,000 masks and 800 bottles of 8-ounce hand sanitizer to community segments particularly vulnerable as COVID-19 cases begin to rise again. Masks will be distributed to area farmworkers, low-income students and domestic violence victims hard-hit by the pandemic.
Nationwide, Bank of America has distributed more than 8 million masks to communities disproportionately impacted by the coronavirus, including communities of color, and is connected to its $1 billion, four-year commitment of additional support to help local communities address economic and racial inequality accelerated by a global pandemic.
“The health and safety of our employees, clients and communities remain our top priority during this prolonged health and humanitarian crisis,” said Mark Riley, Fresno market president, Bank of America. “One of the ways we continue to support our communities is by working with local partners to identify and distribute PPE and hand sanitizer to the most vulnerable populations, in this case our farmworkers, victims of domestic violence, students and the organizations that serve these populations.”
A total of 112,000 masks will be distributed to farmworkers – essential workers who harvest the Central Valley’s crops and especially need protection from COVID-19, said Misty Gattie-Blanco, sanctuary director for the Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission, which received 46,000 masks.
“Farm workers are vital workers, putting fresh food on our tables. Unfortunately, quality masks and other items they need to be safe remain a huge need in our agricultural communities,” Gattie-Blanco said. “Thanks to Bank of America's generous donation of masks, we will be able to help hardworking families stay safe by distributing these along with food and other necessities to our rural communities.”
Donations are being made to the following Fresno-area organizations:
- Boys & Girls Clubs Fresno County: 50,000 masks and 400 hand sanitizer bottles to protect students attending Distance Learning Pods.
- Central Valley Farmworker Foundation: 50,000 masks to protect farmworkers.
- Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission /Healthy Harvest Program: 46,000 masks to protect farmworkers.
- Latino Mayor’s Coalition: 16,000 masks to protect farmworkers.
- Marjaree Mason Center: 2,000 masks and 400 hand sanitizer bottles to protect victims of domestic violence.
- Pro-Youth: 10,000 masks to protect children of essential workers attending the organization’s Day Camps.
These mask donations are in addition to Bank of America providing over $570,000 in COVID-19 relief grants to Fresno/Visalia nonprofits.
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