Residents of the 27610 ZIP code will have the chance to pick up free, protective face masks thanks to a collaboration between WakeMed, Wake County and the City of Raleigh. The pilot program aims to distribute 30,000 masks at locations within the community, by volunteers and community leaders over the coming weeks. Over 5,000 masks have already been given out since June 20.
“We know that this neighborhood has the highest number of known COVID-19-positive cases in Wake County,” said Derrick Remer, City of Raleigh Emergency Management director. “The goal of our collaborative effort is to slow the spread of the virus within one of our most vulnerable communities.
In addition to having the most cases in the county, the 27610 ZIP code also has one of the highest COVID-19 caseloads in the state. This collaborative effort will be funded through a combination of the county’s CARES Act funding, WakeMed Foundation and in-kind staff services.
“Wearing a mask is one of the most effective ways we can help to reduce transmission, said Donald Gintzig, WakeMed president and CEO. “Providing this resource to those especially at risk helps people do their part to slow the spread of disease within their community. This effort is part of our commitment to the health and wellbeing of the communities we serve.”
Upcoming distribution sites include:
- Wake County’s drive-thru testing June 25 – 27 at Southeast Raleigh Magnet High School from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
- Alpha Kappa Alpha’s community outreach on June 27 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
- Gethsemane Seventh Day Adventist food drive on June 27 from 12:30 p.m. until gone.
More locations and dates will be shared in the coming days.
The community organizations currently involved in the program include:
- Phillip Randolph Institute
- Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., Alpha Theta Omega Chapter
- Catholic Parrish Outreach
- City of Raleigh
- Crosby Advocacy Group
- Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., Raleigh Alumnae Chapter
- DHIC – Washington Terrace
- El Pueblo
- Fertile Ground Food Cooperative
- NC Counts Coalition
- Omega Psi Fraternity Inc., Xi Mu Mu Chapter
- UNC Healthcare
- Wake County
- WakeMed Health and Hospitals
Organizations interested in joining in the program’s efforts can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
“It is particularly important that organizations and partners who focus on some of the neighborhoods in 27610 be involved in the planning and implementation,” said Regina Petteway, Wake County Human Services director. “We want to ensure all of our residents in this area have access to protective masks.”
At this time, masks will only be distributed in the 27610 ZIP code area. Based on the need demonstrated in the pilot program, community partners will continue to work collaboratively to establish additional distribution opportunities throughout the county.
For more information: raleighnc.gov