Everywhere you look, Iowans are uniting like never before. While times may be tough right now, we’re seeing it won’t stop the great people in the state from supporting one another. Many have taken to social media to help those in their communities, share helpful resources or to simply highlight something positive to bring joy to others. This Week in Social will round-up the best of #IowansUnite and share these uplifting stories.
Although this project started as an informal group of companies and organizations that 3D-printed face shields, it rapidly evolved into something much bigger. The operation is now statewide and is capable of producing up to 250,000 FDA-compliant face shields to help protect healthcare professionals against COVID-19.
The University of Iowa is leading an initiative to produce the face shields, and two Iowa manufacturers have picked up the cause. Vantec Inc. and Engineered Plastic Components Inc. recently joined the UI-led cause to provide personal protective equipment (PPE).
“I am elated and amazed at the willingness to help,” said UI’s chief innovation officer Jon Darsee. “I’m more amazed at the speed at which the help arrived. It demonstrates that the best in humanity can surface at the worst of times.”
The National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium in Dubuque is very clearly a proponent of stewardship for our planet. The museum took to social media last week to promote the 50th anniversary of Earth Day with posts centered around rivers, questions posed about how their followers engage with nature and volunteer efforts to distribute tree saplings to Dubuque families.
The Test Iowa Challenge was launched on April 21 as a partnership between state leaders and private corporations. The challenge is designed to help assess risk, test people and track positive cases to try to limit the spread of COVID-19, as well as dramatically increase the rate of testing for COVID-19 cases. Respondents take a health assessment to determine the current risk and to help the Iowa Department of Public Health and government leaders’ insight into the collective health of the state. To participate in the challenge, include the hashtag #TestIowaChallenge and @mention five or more friends and TestIowa.com in your post. The challenge already has some notable participants, including actors Ashton Kutcher and Brandon Routh.
Recognizing volunteers is always important, but given the current climate of the country, volunteers have become more important than ever before. For National Volunteer Week, University of Iowa Health Care released a video featuring employees wearing protective face shields and holding cards thanking their volunteers for being “generous, caring and dedicated.