P.E.I. food banks now giving out masks; Access PEI taking mask donations

·2 min read

Islanders who would like to donate reusable, non-medical masks can now drop off donations at all eight Access PEI locations across the province.

And for Islanders who may need a reusable mask and can't afford one, free masks will now be available at 14 food banks and pantries around P.E.I.

Minister of Social Development and Housing Ernie Hudson made the announcement about both organisations in the legislature Wednesday.

"For many Islanders, purchasing masks may not fall within their budget. Every Islander deserves access to protection against COVID-19," Hudson said as part of the announcement.

It's great to see that the government is kind of answering the call and getting up to the plate - Alyssa MacKinnon, co-founder of Mask Central PEI

Alyssa MacKinnon, co-founder of Mask Central PEI, said her group helped facilitate the mask donation drop-offs at Access PEI.

Mask Central PEI is a Facebook group that helps connect people who want to donate masks with organizations looking for mask donations.

MacKinnon said Premier Dennis King and his staff reached out to her group, wondering how they could help get masks out to Islanders as quickly as possible.

"We're very excited and we're really overwhelmed with the support that we've been getting," said MacKinnon.

"It's great to see that the government is kind of answering the call and getting up to the plate, and implementing getting these masks out to low-income Islanders where they need it the most."

Travis Kingdon/CBC
Travis Kingdon/CBC

Islanders' generosity overwhelming

MacKinnon said that since she helped launch the new group just eight days ago, the support and generosity they've gotten from Islanders has been overwhelming.

She said that with donation drop-offs at Access PEI locations from Souris to Tignish, the Island is well-covered.

"Those, I think, are amazing strides coming not only from us, but from the province and from Islanders to kind of address what low-income Islanders' needs are," said MacKinnon.

The 14 food bank locations where people can pick up a donated mask also range across the province. You can see a full list of the food banks and the Access PEI locations on the Mask Central PEI Facebook page.

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