Caring for Community... Cross Country to Cali!
“Can I buy the Envo mask and a set of filters?” came the message through Phinney Lumber’s Facebook page. “Sure!” was the brief response from Phinney’s social media monitor, Francine, as it was 9PM Eastern time and she was at home watching a movie. “Call the store in the morning and we’ll get you all set up.” And that’s how the little lumber yard from Maine connected with an ER nurse named Christine in Anaheim, California.
“I have been looking for N95 masks everywhere, our hospital is not able to get them, and the staff just puts their masks on their car dashboards in hopes that the UV light from the sun will kill the virus,” explained Christine, “we are really struggling here in Anaheim. Homelessness is a big issue; we can’t keep the people in one place. The beaches are crowded because people don’t want to stay home any more. We are trying to test people with blood tests and swab tests to see if they have developed antibodies, and if they haven’t we can tell them to stay home, but that is all we can do. The people want out.” As healthcare workers succumb to the virus, N95 masks are becoming a necessary but hard to find accessory. As luck would have it, Christine found the protection she needed all the way across the country in a small hardware store in Gorham, Maine.
Envo masks are reusable N95 respirator masks used by tradespeople and in industrial environments. They are manufactured in Hampton, NH and are sold by building supply dealers like Phinney Lumber to protect construction and manufacturing workers. Coincidentally, the N95 rating is effective at protecting health care workers from the COVID 19 virus. “Finding you was really a blessing,” said Christine, “thank you so much; I can’t even tell you how I feel right now.”
When President Michael Phinney heard the story, he sent Christine ten extra mask filters and a nod of approval. “It doesn’t surprise me that he did it,” said marketing manager Francine Morin, “we’ve been giving away toilet paper, finding ways to get hand sanitizer and masks and other necessities to our customers, and just helping out in every way we can.”
In this unprecedented time; one which is dramatically impacting the way small businesses function; the well-being of employees and customers is top priority. Business will come back when it comes back; right now it is time for helping others, and the team at Phinney is doing just that. Author and civil rights activist Maya Angelou said it best this way: “At the end of the day people won't remember what you said or did, they will remember how you made them feel.”