"A Call to Arms"
Throughout the history of our great nation we have had wars and floods, political upheavals and assassinations … yet nothing has posed a bigger threat to our economy and our people than what we presently face with the coronavirus (COVID-19).
We can’t simply hide in our homes until the danger has passed. There are some we depend on to produce and deliver food, prepare our medicines, rush to our homes if utilities break down, and keep us and our streets safe. Once overlooked, these workers have become more important in our lives … and these individuals … true heroes every one … are directly in the line of fire.
Yet one group that stands tallest of all … even among these giants … are those countless individuals who protect us from harm.
Doctors and nurses, police, EMS and firefighters stand at the front lines of any major crisis. Their jobs have inherent hazards even without the presence of a natural disaster or other major threat. Given a major pandemic, their work has suddenly become more hazardous and certainly much more complex. There is a moral obligation from those who are blessed to receive such protections to find ways to get these brave individuals the essential safety equipment they need.
We can sit idly by, hoping this disease does not land upon our own doorstep, but the Emerald Foundation, in its “Operation Emerald” is taking a different approach. We feel a “call to arms” is necessary to help stem the tide … and we ask your help.
The Emerald Foundation, an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, has a nearly 25,000 square foot building in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, which is being set up as a staging area for the re-distribution of goods and equipment to hospitals and those workers in need of support as they focus on battling this disease. The plan for the initial phase – addressing an immediate need – is to acquire and purchase “PPE” (Personal Protective Equipment used to combat COVID-19), followed by broadening assistance to those directly affected by the virus. We plan to make optimal use of our facility. The building will operate similar to a food bank, except instead of food, it will house a variety of PPE items. These essential items will then be distributed through a system best able to help those in need.
We realize that eventually there will be larger government stockpiles of PPE available to first responders that may make these initial efforts no longer necessary. However, with the first big surge of patients expected to rise within the next several weeks, we believe the needs far outweigh the abilities of any one entity (government, private, or non-profit) to simultaneously satisfy all that will be required. Our initial focus is on first responders but as events unfold we will direct our efforts where the needs are greatest and moral obligations are the highest.
Our commitment is to serve and protect those who protect us. We believe that this platform will then be followed nationally by other communities seeking a template on how to help those that they depend on in their own time of need.
Joining the Foundation in this quest is Dr. Christian Macedonia, Army veteran of three wars, who led the Grey Team – commissioned to improve the care of American forces serving in Iraq and Afghanistan – while also serving as Medical Science Advisor to the Joint Chiefs of Staff before achieving the rank of Colonel and becoming a Senior Government Executive at DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency). He is joined in this effort by multiple distinguished business leaders and other medical professionals. Organizing the ground force and distribution of supplies is Martha Besecker, Interim Executive Director of the Emerald Foundation and Suzy Kettler-Zeigler, Building/Operations Director of the Emerald Foundation.
Inaction is not an option and we hope you will help us in our efforts to raise funds, allowing us to make needed purchases, by donating via our website ( https://emeralde.org/donate/give-online/ ) under the Operation Emerald category..
Of course, while the online donation is the preferred method (due to speed) our mailing address for checks is:
The Emerald Foundation
2120 Oregon Pike
Lancaster, PA 17601
Anyone who has sourcing leads for PPE items or contacts to those who may be able to assist in the sourcing or funding for Operation Emerald, please forward such information to Joe Besecker at the following email address: JoeB@emeralde.org .
It was Winston Churchill that said, “never, never believe any war will be smooth and
This is a war … and it won’t be easy.
But with the combined efforts of community members … and by “community” we mean on a national level… we will get through this. Together.
And together we will look forward to better times ahead.
Interim Executive Director
Christian R. Macedonia, MD
CEO and Managing Partner
Lancaster Life Science Group
Joseph G. Witthohn, CFA
Wit & Wisdom
April 5, 2020
The Emerald Foundation is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit, charitable organization. A copy of the official registration and financial information may be obtained from the Pennsylvania Department of State by calling toll free, within Pennsylvania, 1-800-732-0999. Registration does not limit endorsement.
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