- De Toledo High School discovered they still have boxes of N95 masks hidden in their storage.
- They donated it right away so front-liners can use them.
- 1,300 went to Woodland Hills Medical Center, and 700 to West Hills Los Angeles Police Department.
Mark Shpall, the school head at the De Toledo High School in West Hills, California, learned that they have more than 1,000 N95 masks on the campus that have been forgotten. Upon learning this, he did not hesitate to donate them to those who have the most need for it.
Amid the coronavirus outbreak, the local doctors were desperately needing additional masks. Mark clearly knew this, so within hours after discovering the masks at their school, they sent 1,300 masks to Woodland Hills Medical Center, and another 700 to West Hills Los Angeles Police Department.
“This is a crazy time and situation and we are all in this together. The more we can all be kind and helpful, the better we’re all going to be,” he told PEOPLE.
The school procured the masks last fall intended for “future emergencies” during which wildfires devastated Los Angeles.
On Thursday, David Marcus, De Toledo’s business manager, did some cleaning with the help of the maintenance and security staff when they discovered the boxes in the storage, says Mark.
He immediately called his physician brother at Woodland Hills who connected him to the medical director.
“I was actually going in to give platelets because I know those are also in need, and as soon as I came out, they had them already and I was able to pick them up and deliver them,” he said. “It was four pretty big boxes of stuff.
“It was really sweet. One of the physicians who was there to help was almost in tears. I didn’t realize how important this was to them and it was really humbling to see that we were able to make some small, little difference for the hospitals.”
While the virus cases in their area is minimal compared to others, it is still a great deal for frontliners to gear up and protect themselves properly.
Greg Kelman, the hospital’s medical director, sent an email to Mark later shared with PEOPLE expressing gratitude to his “life-saving gift.”
The West Hills Police Department was also very grateful for the boxes of masks saying they “really look after us very nicely when we have issues.”
But it doesn’t end there, Mark also plans to donate necessary items like paper towels and hand sanitizer to a local Jewish addiction center, Beit T’Shuvah.
Mark said, “If we can make even a small impact on organizations that make a difference in this world — the police, the hospitals, the rehab centers — then it’s a win-win.”
According to the New York Times, 19 people have already died out of 1,057 cases in California alone.