2020 has brought us a fight like no other in modern history. People all over the world are battling COVID- 19 -- an invisible virus that’s taken thousands of lives -- and our best defense against it is to stay home. For many, this means long days inside, only venturing out to restock their necessities. For a select few, this means putting their lives at risk every day on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic.
Our healthcare heroes -- doctors, nurses, EMT’s, respiratory techs -- are going above and beyond to treat their patients, often without the protective equipment that helps to keep them safe. Many healthcare workers have taken to social media to reach out to their community for support. A chafing face mask may not seem like a big deal to some, but when you have to wear one for a 12-hour shift in the COVID - 19 wing of your hospital, comfort becomes a matter of life and death. The more painful the masks are for healthcare workers to wear, the more often they’ll need to adjust them or take them off completely.
Julie Bartholomew saw the post and immediately answered the call. An inventor, and business owner in Michigan, she leveraged her professional connections and social network to recruit a team of problem-solvers. After confirming the need with the heroes themselves, Julie and her volunteer recruits began manufacturing their creative solution. The team relied on Julie’s Beauty Tech experience to track down the most comfortable spa-quality headbands still in-stock and ordered 3,000 of them.
With bands in hand, there was still one component left in their face mask fix: the buttons that hold it all together. Julie reached out to another business owner and problem-solver, Tommey Walker Jr. The founder of DETROIT -VS- EVERYBODY. Tommey had recently launched the EVERYBODY -VS- COVID- 19 collection, and seized the opportunity to support frontline workers.
The result: buttons with attitude and an inspirational message.
What started with a healthcare worker’s call for help, led to a group of strangers from six different states uniting to respond. Bands and buttons are now being distributed to healthcare workers in COVID- 19 hotspots across the country. If the coronavirus has taught us anything, it’s that our “essential workers” are the true heroes of our society, but even heroes need relief. There’s hope, but we’re not out of the pandemic yet, and you (yes YOU) have a part to play. Band together. Support the supporters. Respond to the first responders. Be a living reminder for your community that “ it’s Everybody against the virus; rather than Everybody against each other.