Photo: HutchCC Allied Health Facebook Page

By Laci Sutton / Staff Writer

The world is in the middle of a devastating, life-changing pandemic. With stay-at-home orders in place, it can be easy to focus on the negativity that’s happening.

It’s a terrifying time filled with a lot of unknown, but it’s also a time for communities to come together and take care of each other. 

Hutchinson Community College’s Allied Health Department is just one example of how local businesses are stepping up and doing what they can to help in these unprecedented times. 

On April 2, Hutchinson Regional Healthcare Systems made a social media post asking for public donations of personal protective equipment (PPE) and mini hand sanitizers. 

Lesley Weigel, the Marketing and Career Development Coordinator for the HutchCC Allied Health Department, saw the post and contacted several faculty members to set up a donation.

“Through collaborative efforts, and Dr. Carter File’s final approval, it was made possible,” Weigel said.

Within 24 hours, the Allied Health Department was able to donate its supply of pocket-sized hand sanitizers to Hutchinson Regional Medical Center. 

“Hand sanitizers were purchased for marketing purposes through Workforce Development and Outreach funds,” Weigel said. “Their original purpose was to be provided to secondary education students and staff that do tours of Allied Health programs.”

Other donated items included ventilators, gloves, isolation kits and screen wipes. 

Thanks to help from Denny Stoecklein, HutchCC Director of Marketing and Public Relations, the Allied Health Department was also able to donate hand sanitizers to HutchCC faculty and staff members who are still working on campus. 

Debbie Hackler, the HutchCC Allied Health Department co-Chair, said she was proud of the Department’s efforts. 

“We were glad to give out the hand sanitizer for those who continue to work on campus during the COVID 19 situation. Safety for everyone is paramount during these uncertain times,” Hackler said.

Other community members stepped up to aid in their own ways. 

Salt City Brewing Company distilled gallons of hand sanitizers and recently donated several to local first responders and medical providers. 

HUBCO Inc., a Hutchinson textile manufacturer, produced face masks to donate to the community.

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