SPRINGFIELD, Missouri — Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris is donating 1 million FDA-approved ASTM Level 1 procedure face masks to health care workers and first responders working on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis across the United States.
In Denham Springs and Gonzales, Baton Rouge General and Our Lady of the Lake Ascension will receive 20,000 face masks in total, a news release said.
The nationwide donation comes as supplies for personal protective equipment are in high demand and short supply in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to the influx of patients at U.S. hospitals and medical centers being treated for the virus, critical supplies like face masks have been rapidly depleted, leaving tens of thousands of health care workers in a vulnerable state as they race to save lives and protect communities.
“We are extremely grateful to our nation’s health care workers serving on the front lines of this unprecedented global health crisis,” Morris said. “These heroic men and women continue to dedicate their lives to save the loved ones of others, and we are all honored to support them on behalf of everyone at Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s, and the communities we serve.”
Convoy of Hope is using its national network of partners and volunteers to identify appropriate hospitals and medical facilities, and help distribute the masks based on area needs and demands. The donation will provide thousands of masks to every community with a Bass Pro Shops or Cabela’s store, boat center, distribution center and White River Marine Group manufacturing facility — over 200 communities, the release said.
The logistics of the donation have been in the works since in the onset of the crisis. Morris worked with Bass Pro Shops partner Rusty Sellars, CEO of True Timber, to source the masks through his apparel and fabric suppliers.
With both organizations founded and headquartered in Springfield, Missouri, Convoy of Hope’s partnership with Bass Pro Shops and the Morris family dates back more than 20 years. Together, the partners have supported a variety of relief efforts in response to devastating tornadoes, hurricanes and wildfires, the release said.