As of May 11, 2020, more than 2,300 British Columbians have tested positive for COVID-19 but our province has the lowest mortality rate of any jurisdiction in Canada. Right before British Columbia begins to implement its Restart Plan to ensure that the province can come back from COVID-19, the Rotary Richmond Foundation distributed 7,000 disposable face masks through the Rotary Club of Richmond to 6 community service organizations in Richmond, Burnaby and Vancouver in time.
  • 1,800 to the Richmond Transit Centre to keep bus operators in both Richmond and Surrey safe and healthy.
  • 1,800 through Wellspring Charitable Foundation donated to PolyCan Health Centre that will soon provide walk-in and urgent care services accessible to the community of students, faculty, staff and families living and working on Burnaby Mountain.
  • 900 to Pathways Clubhouse whose 25 employees offer multiple programs and support over 350 active members who have a mental illness.
  • 900 to Atira Women's Resource Society which supports women and children affected by violence in Vancouver Downtown Eastside.
  • 900 to the Aboriginal Mother Centre which is dedicated to moving mothers and children at risk off the streets.
  • 700 to Family Services of Greater Vancouver that supports families and individuals across the Lower Mainland living in need, in crisis, or with trauma.
In total, 14,400 masks were contributed by Mr. Scott Qu with assistance from Ms. Jenny Huang and Ms. Fatima Wang to the Rotary Richmond Foundation. All of them are BC residents. Scott moved to Vancouver in 2011 and later studied in the University of Washington. He is now a postgraduate student of the University of Southern California. Scott still has his family in BC and he always enjoys the friendly environment, peaceful people, and the culture diversity in British Columbia and Canada.
Donors were mainly touched by the Rotary Wuhan Coronavirus Relief Task, an international humanitarian collaboration the Rotary Club of Richmond participated in back in February, 2020. Donors are convinced that Rotary can not only connect the world but also maximize the utility as well as solidarity in the face of disaster.
The Mask Relief Task was initiated by the Rotary Clubs of Shanghai, in conjunction with the Shanghai GuoFeng Charity Foundation, Rotary Club of Richmond, Richmond Sunset and various Rotary Clubs in USA and France. Médecins Sans Frontières a.k.a. Doctors without Borders (MSF) generously agreed to supply 38,000 N95 medical respirator masks at cost. The ten involved Rotary clubs quickly and successfully raised $ 20,000 USD to acquire this batch of 38,000 N95 medical respirator masks for frontline medical and health professionals in Wuhan hospitals.
The Rotary Richmond Foundation was kindly granted a one-time exemption of the Medical Device Establishment License (MDEL) by Health Canada to import the 14,400 disposable face masks to Canada. As of this moment, the Rotary Richmond Foundation is working on the confirmation and distribution of the rest face masks to long term care homes and assisted living homes in Richmond area.