Orvis is working together with local partners near its Roanoke, Virginia, fulfillment center to manufacture masks for the homeless in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Demand has increased for non-medical-grade face masks since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a recommendation that individuals wear cloth face coverings in public settings. Orvis’s efforts will directly support Roanoke-based non-profit Rescue Mission, an organization providing shelter and resources for the regional homeless population.
“There is a very real need for masks among our homeless population here in Roanoke,” says Roanoke Rescue Mission CEO Lee Clark. “These masks are making a tremendous difference in keeping people safe, particularly those with existing medical conditions who are at greatest risk of infection.”
Orvis is collaborating with local furniture manufacturer Chervan to cut patterns, which Orvis is using to stitch together the face masks. Currently, Orvis employees are able to produce up to 2,000 masks each week, the majority of which are donated to Rescue Mission. These masks will be used to protect members of the local homeless community who may be more vulnerable to infection and complications, as well as Rescue Mission staff who are caring for these community members.
“The impact of this pandemic on our communities is heartbreaking, particularly the impact we are seeing on the homeless. We have a long-standing relationship with Roanoke Rescue Mission and we’re proud to help,” says Ken Smith, Orvis VP of customer operations.
In addition to the masks being produced for Rescue Mission, Orvis is also providing masks to its own team members in Roanoke, who are working to ensure customers are continuing to receive excellent service from Orvis.
To make additional donations, and to learn more about the nonprofit Rescue Mission, please visit their Ways to Give page. To learn more about Orvis, and its other philanthropic programs, please visit our Conservation pages.