Dear St. Pete, help bring 20,000 more free masks to the Sunshine City

Photo of an individual wearing a blue face mask outside in a park
smith and associates

Dear local business leaders

We seek your generosity and support to help our beloved St. Pete get through this pandemic, one of the most challenging periods that we may experience in our lifetime. After a long period of being shut down, small businesses are trying to muster the will to stay afloat, some are trying to keep a job or find one at this point to pay their rents else get evicted, many protesting for the right to breathe.

To the bigger corporations and organizations that find St. Pete as your home, we earnestly request your support, however big or small it may be, to help us produce more masks that will hopefully protect members of our community who have no access to them and reduce the number of cases of Covid-19 that will in turn keep our hospitals from getting unnecessarily burdened.

Trevor Burgess, CEO of Neptune Flood Insurance, launched a Masks for St. Pete Fundraiser. Burgess and his partner Gary M. Hess donated 10,000 masks to the city of St. Pete, and they’re working to bring even more for residents in need.

“Gary Hess and I donated 10,000 masks to City of St. Petersburg, Florida working with Rick Kriseman and Kanika Jelks to get them distributed,” Burgess wrote on the Fundraiser page. “Help us raise money for 10,000 more masks.”

I believe that with all your help as big businesses, we can reverse this current trend of the virus, avoid greater losses in health and lives, and continue to restart our local economy safely. Until there is a vaccine, this is what our present and near future looks like. Now, more than ever, we need to help each other. If we are to make it out of this pandemic, we will need all hands on deck. Each one responsible for ourselves, our families, our neighbors, our employees, our community.

Please consider making a donation by clicking here or writing a check. You can email me at info@ilovetheburg.com if you wish to send via mail. If you know of a business leader who may not be on this platform, please share or forward this with them through email or any other means to reach them.

I thank you, our business and organization leaders, for taking on this challenge in advance and helping our beloved Burg. I know this wonderful city will return the favor to you and yours in the quality of life the future promises.

For now, may everyone stay safe and healthy.

Sincerely
Dexter Fabian
Publisher, I Love the Burg

Of course, we also wanted input from our friends in the hospitality industry. Below you’ll find quotes from Raphael Perrier, owner of Kahwa Coffee,  Allison Harris (Bodega, Baba on Central) and Vickie Moran (The Ale and The Witch, Green Bench Brewing) about why they wear a mask, and why you should too.

“The health and safety of our staff is always our top priority. We made sure to supply our Kahwa employees with masks, even as our cafes remained closed for dine-in.  At the outset we offered free coffee drinks to all healthcare providers, and we did this due to our gratitude for their exhaustive efforts to combat COVID-19. It is that same gratitude that spurs us to continue to wear masks — and adhere to the guidelines laid out by medical professionals in Tampa Bay and at the CDC. We want the community to know that Kahwa will always be a safe and welcoming place.” – Raphael Perrier

“I wear a mask at work and every single time I walk into a store. I do it simply because it’s common sense and courtesy and care not only for myself and my family but my community. Take care of others by taking care of yourself. Love and respect for each other is more relevant now than ever. It’s our duty!” – Allison Harris

“I certainly can’t afford to go backwards, both financially and mentally! But more than that, I think it’s important to wear them because it’s an easy thing everyone can do to help limit the spread of COVID. It’s a simple human kindness and it shows respect. Everyone has a person they care about. Whether it’s family, friends, mentors, co-workers, customers, we all have people (including ourselves) we don’t want to get sick. And if putting a piece of cloth over your nose and mouth can keep everyone safe, why on Earth wouldn’t you do it?” – Vickie Moran

Why do you wear a mask?

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Written by Dex Fabian

Dex Fabian

Dex Fabian is the co-founder of I Love the Burg and That's So Tampa. A graphic designer by trade, Dex has been witness to Tampa Bay's explosion to become one of the hottest regions in the nation. In 2009, he helped develop the brand for I Love the Burg and in 2014 developed the branding for That's So Tampa and has been a regular contributor to both ever since.