Campaigns urge public generosity

Campaigns urge public generosity

Funds being raised for protective gear

Many campaigns have been launched to raise funds to buy protective equipment for medical staff to help tackle Covid-19 and save lives.

Saying every little bit counts, Asst Prof Ponn Virulrak and his friends are urging people who have N95 surgical masks to donate them to medical staff who need them more.

In a Facebook post, he called on people who happen to have such masks at home to contact him via Line ID ponnvirulrak, so he and members of the Satit Chula 30 Alumni network can collect them and deliver them to hospitals that need them.

"Large hospitals like King Chulalongkorn Memorial, Ramathibodi and Chakrinarubodin Medical Institute need at least 100 N95 masks each day," he said.

"Some people have asked if I would bother to pick up the one or two masks they have, and I have said yes. Every mask is valuable," said the former Chulalongkorn University assistant professor of architecture.

Since his campaign kicked off on Monday, he has received pledges for 1,700 N95 masks. As of yesterday afternoon, he had collected 1,200 of them and delivered 1,000 masks to Nakhon Pathom Hospital, Chakrinarubodin Medical Institute, and Bangkok's Chulalongkorn Memorial and Siriraj hospitals.

Earlier this week, the Ramathibodi Foundation, Siriraj Foundation and Rajavithi Hospital each called for donations for the purchase of medical equipment and supplies, especially ventilators and personal protective equipment (PPE).

Fundraising platform has also been raising funds for the purpose and has sent more than 1,800 PPE suits to hospitals in Bangkok, including the one run by the Department of Corrections. It is scheduled to send another 800 PPE suits to hospitals in Bangkok, Chon Buri and Chiang Mai. It is also raising funds for hospitals in the southern province of Yala.

Meanwhile, Prangphisut Daengdej, the co-founder of the Mask Bank Crowdfunding and Donation Campaign, said her project aims to tackle the shortage of face masks stemming from hoarding.

"We are using a monthly subscription model to ensure purchases meet real demands. The minimum purchase is 1,000 baht for 400 masks [2.5 baht apiece]. While 200 pieces will be delivered to your house, the remainder will be donated to charities, including public health agencies, hospitals and schools," she told the Bangkok Post.

Ms Prangphisut also said that funds raised from orders will pave the way for new factories.

"We expect to receive 100,000 orders and will deliver at least 40 million masks in the next six to eight weeks," she said.

"We have already found areas in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and Nakhon Sawan. The first factory will likely be on my plot of land in Nakhon Sawan. We will encourage local people to work to generate jobs and income."

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