Businesses step up to support first responders amid Coronavirus pandemic


The Crusader Staff

Members of Home Depot dropped off boxes of masks for the Daly City Police Department.

Brandon Vargas ‘20, Copy Editor

With healthcare workers nationwide putting their lives in jeopardy in order to help others, some companies have also stepped up to the line.

“Inspired by the generosity of our partners (employees), we are offering all front-line responders a free tall brewed coffee at participating stores in the US,” read Starbucks’ Twitter post on March 26.

Also in an effort to say “thank you” to all those risking their lives, Krispy Kreme is providing free doughnuts to healthcare workers every Monday through May 11. 

“To share joy among the millions in the medical community, and to show our gratitude for all they are doing, beginning Monday, March 30 – National Doctors’ Day – and on every subsequent Monday through National Nurses Week (May 6-12), Krispy Kreme will provide all healthcare workers free dozens of our iconic Original Glazed® Doughnuts,” read the company’s website on March 25.

Healthcare and other front-line professionals risk their lives every day while they are exposed to patients who test positive for COVID-19. The efforts of these companies are a testament to the nation’s gratitude for those who still have to work in the field despite the shelter-in-place orders. 

“It’s a good feeling knowing that a large company, such as Starbucks, recognizes the work that we do,” said Sergeant Dave Dorantes ’88 of the SFPD. Though he does not take advantage of Starbucks’ complimentary coffee himself, Dorantes mentioned, “For cops, doing something as simple as getting a cup of coffee can bring some relief during this highly stressful situation.” 

Furthermore, Dunkin’ Donuts and its Foundation, Dunkin’ Joy in Childhood, have allocated $1.25 million in emergency funding to health and hunger relief organizations throughout the United States. 

On April 9, according to the Dunkin’ Donuts news website, “Dunkin’ and the Foundation delivered more than 10,000 cups of coffee and 20,000 baked goods to more than 20,000 healthcare workers in recent weeks, with plans to continue serving those who serve – and those in need – during these unprecedented times.”

However, not all companies are just providing food for healthcare workers and other front-line responders. Flexport, a freight forwarding and customs brokerage company based in San Francisco, has raised awareness of the pandemic through a GoFundMe page. Their goal of $10 million addresses the problem of “a shortage of masks, gowns, gloves and other critical supplies to protect our medical professionals in hospitals around the world.”

The company’s statement on GoFundMe also states, “We need to protect frontline responders. More responders on the frontline means more capacity at our hospitals, and more people will get the care they need.” 

As of Saturday, April 11, the GoFundMe has raised more than $6.5 million.

However, small businesses and companies are also facing economic recession. In effect, Facebook has decided to financially support small businesses all over the world. “That’s why today I’m announcing that Facebook is investing $100 million to help 30,000 small businesses in over 30 countries where our employees live and work,” stated Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg on March 17.

Fanatics is yet another company to assist in the growing demand for masks to protect healthcare workers. Fanatics, which manufactures official MLB player jerseys, is repurposing one of its factories to produce masks and gowns. They plan to use the same fabric that New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies players and coaches wear on the field during baseball season. According to Yahoo Finance, “Fanatics plans to immediately disseminate these masks and gowns to hospitals and emergency personnel throughout Pennsylvania.”

These are just a few of the many examples of larger corporations helping to meet the demand of a greater cause, making this situation more tolerable for everyone.