The IRONMAN Foundation, Framebridge and Good360 have partnered for Operation IRONAID Face Masks. This is a program to bring non-sterile face masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE) to first responders, hospitals and other organizations in need across the US.
Together, these brands are joining forces to repurpose more than 50,000 new and unused shirts into 500,000 non-sterile face masks and are supporting the production of 100,000 acrylic face shields.
This past weekend, during the IRONMAN VR Challenge Facebook Live broadcast, the IRONMAN Foundation announced the first round of Operation IRONAID Face Masks donations. With the support of United States Senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema, 7,500 non-sterile masks and 7,500 acrylic face shields will be distributed to the Professional Firefighters of Arizona.
In addition, the IRONMAN Foundation announced on Sunday that the City of San Francisco will receive 5,000 non-sterile face masks for distribution to the city’s vulnerable populations.
Members of the IRONMAN community such Michael Kane, Senior Vice President Operations and Supply Chain at Framebridge, stepped up to the plate to offer support in the form of production capabilities. Good360 joined in to manage logistics and transport raw materials and finished products to the first responders and hospitals who need them most.
IRONMAN Foundation ambassador Bethany Smith also assisted with elevating the collaboration and found an opportunity with her employer, Beam Suntory, a world leader in premium spirits, to provide 18,624 new and unused shirts to be made into non-sterile and non-branded face masks.
“During this dynamic time, our greatest strength is in coming together, combining our resources and talents to make a positive difference in these uncertain times,” said Sarah Hartmann, Executive Director of the IRONMAN Foundation.
“With a shortage of protective masks throughout the world, we recognize the ability to make a positive difference with Operation IRONAID Face Masks. We are also looking forward to working with race operators and organizations around the world to help with the creation of non-sterile face masks from new and unused shirts.
“We recognize that this is a challenging time, but our community is committed to working together to continue to create a lasting impact.”
Framebridge, a company known for making custom frames, transformed its manufacturing facility in Lexington, Kentucky, from making frames to producing non-sterile face masks with new and unused race shirts provided by the IRONMAN Foundation, as well as acrylic face shields for those on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. Framebridge will produce more than 15,000 non-sterile face masks a week.
“At Framebridge, we are honoured to support frontline workers in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic through the manufacturing of PPE,” said Mike Kane, Senior VP Operations and Supply Chain at the company.
“We’re proud to have quickly pivoted our custom framing operation and team to produce droplet masks and acrylic face shields when the need emerged. We are excited to work with the IRONMAN Foundation on Operation IRONAID Face Masks to make a positive impact together.”
Good360 is a ‘global leader in product philanthropy and purposeful giving’. The organization is committed to its mission of helping transform the lives of those in need through the distribution of essential goods during the COVID-19 pandemic. Good360 will manage logistics and transportation of the new and unused race shirts to Framebridge’s facility in Lexington, and the finished non-sterile face masks to first responders, hospitals and others who are combating the pandemic.
“Being part of this collaboration to provide face masks and other PPE to first responders during this crisis makes us exceptionally proud,” said Matt Connelly, CEO of Good360. “Our proven track record as a humanitarian supply chain, delivering goods to those in critical need, enables us to be part of this creative cross-sector solution.
“By leveraging each of our organization’s individual strengths, we are more effective together in supporting those on the frontlines doing great work.”
The IRONMAN Foundation is also accepting donations of sterile masks to be used as PPE for distribution through the Operation IRONAID Face Masks program. Race operators and organizations with new and unused race shirts are encouraged to donate these items to the IRONMAN Foundation to be made into non-sterile face masks and distributed to help keep at-risk individuals safe.
In addition to Operation IRONAID Face Masks, the IRONMAN Foundation has expanded its IRONAID program to include the IRONAID COVID-19 Pandemic Support Fund. To date, over US$160,000 has been raised and will go towards providing grants to health-related non-profit organizations around the world who have launched COVID-19 pandemic response programs.
Race operators and organizations that wish to assist Operation IRONAID Face Masks with shirts that meet the criteria are asked to reach out to email@example.com.