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Coronavirus: Guelph businessman donates 3,000 face shields to frontline workers

INKSmith / Twitter

A Guelph business owner is stepping up to the plate in the fight against the spread of the novel coronavirus by donating 3,000 face shields to local frontline workers.

Darren Devine, president of Devine and Associates Financial Services on Waterloo Avenue, spent $21,000 through his business on the shields made by Kitchener-based INKSmith.

READ MORE: Coronavirus — Kitchener educational tech company now making protective equipment for health-care workers

Devine said 1,600 have been donated to Guelph General Hospital, while Guelph’s paramedics and firefighters have been given 200 each.

“My hope in all of this is that I can empower other small businesses in the community to understand that it doesn’t take a multi-national corporation to help out,” he said. “Ripples turn into waves and if we all try to do something then we can achieve great things.”

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Devine has also donated masks to fire services in Rockwood and Elora and 800 masks to the hospital in Fergus.

He said he’s done well by being a Guelphite and wanted to do something to help out the community during the crisis.

“It’s a situation where I had the ability to help and felt the call to do,” Devine said.

In a previous interview with Global News, INKSmith, an educational technology company, said it had just started production on the visors but was looking to hire approximately 100 more workers as the company begins mass-producing face shields.

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Devine is happy to help out with the first wave of visors but is now directing frontline workers to INKSmith.

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“I think I have pushed the snowball down the hill,” he said. “I think this is going to gain more and more steam.”

READ MORE: ‘We want to help’ — Guelph, Ont. distiller making free hand sanitizer during pandemic

Guelph General Hospital CEO Marianne Walker told Global News all of the support from the community has been overwhelming.

“The community support with bringing forth the supplies that we need, it’s just remarkable,” she said.

“How supportive they are — I’ve always known that because they have always supported us and the outreach has been phenomenal.”

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