WASHTENAW COUNTY, MI – After the University of Michigan advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament in 2013, former head coach John Beilein had a sub sandwich-themed celebration with his family.
“It was crazy,” he said at the time. “The whole thing was a knock-down, drag-out party.”
Flash forward to 2020, and the Ann Arbor sandwich game is still strong, but for a different, more altruistic reason. DiBella’s Subs, 904 W. Eisenhower Parkway in Ann Arbor’s Cranbrook Village, is feeding local health care workers toiling through the coronavirus pandemic.
The business has donated subs to workers at Packard Health, St. Joseph Mercy Hospital and Michigan Medicine this past week, according to a news release.
“Some medical staff got emotional when the subs were delivered, because they were truly touched by the nice gesture,” spokeswoman Lucy Wang said in the release.
DiBella’s is offering a 50% discount to any customer who wants to donate a tray of subs to first responders, health care workers, military and other essential workers in its “Pay It Forward” initiative. The store will match the order amount and take care of the delivery.
DiBella’s has received more than 60 discounted orders around the greater Detroit area, feeding more than 250 people, the release states.
Here are a few more things that give Washtenaw County residents hope amid the coronavirus pandemic.
If you have a story of a business, organization or person creatively dealing with social distancing and home isolation, or are going above and beyond to help others, please email Samuel Dodge at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ann Arbor art teacher crafting decorative PPE masks
Daria Kim started her spring cleaning back in mid-March once the statewide stay-at-home order went into effect. She discovered something during her reorganizing that gave the Ann Arbor Art Center teacher inspiration.
Kim found a sewing machine, fabric and elastic bands given to her by a close friend from Alabama 20 years ago, she said.
“Something came up in my mind from the bottom of my heart,” Kim said. “Ah ha! Let’s make a face mask.”
Kim has stitched and shared more than 450 masks, using designs with fabrics depicting nature, works of art and more. The former ICU nurse emigrated from South Korea in 1988, so she feels the pain of the medical community, she said.
Kim reached out to students at the art center, as well as friends on Facebook, to distribute her work. When some suggested Kim sell the masks, she said she balked at the idea.
“I said no,” she said. “I knew that what I (was) doing (was) from bottom of my heart during this hard situation. We are all need masks. I think to sell masks…that idea is not me!”
Those interested in learning more, supporting her or requesting a mask, can call 734-834-5477.
“If you need masks for you, your family or your friends, feel free to let me know how many you need,” she said. “I will put them in a bag with your name on it at the front of my porch.”
Ypsilanti nonprofit delivering food, essential items to Washtenaw County residents in need
The Hope Clinic, a nonprofit at 518 Harriet St. in Ypsilanti, is directing its resources to help Washtenaw County residents in need by providing free medical and dental care, delivering groceries and meals and more, according to a release.
People can visit the Ypsilanti location or the satellite clinic at 33608 Palmer Road in Westland for assistance, the release states. So far, donations from across the community have reached about $100,000, allowing for their work to continue during this critical time, the release stated.
“We all know that schools, companies and stores are closed due to COVID-19. But hope is never canceled, and neither is Hope Clinic,” Doug Campbell, executive director, said in the release. “We are so grateful for the generous response of the community, which has stepped up to provide needed food, medical care, and emergency dental services, all in the midst of this chaos. The constant in all of this is the community coming together to serve.”
The clinic’s charitable contributions include:
- Providing pre-packed boxes of groceries six times a week without a prior appointment, as well as personal-care donations, such as toilet paper, dish soap and shampoo.
- Hot meals made available five days a week, which are served carry-out style through the dining room door.
- Fulfilled 1,059 grocery orders in four weeks. More than half of these orders went to households that are new to the clinic’s services, the release stated. Grocery delivery is available, as well.
- Distributing homemade masks made by community members to people coming for groceries or a meal
- Collected $44,372 worth of food and other basic-needs supplies in the last six weeks to be handed back out to the community
The Hope Clinic has partnered with various establishments, including Ann Arbor churches including University Lutheran Chapel, Accelerate, St. Francis of Assisi Catholic and First Presbyterian. In addition, Angel Food Catering and Arbor Brewing Company have assisted, the release states.
GameAbove, an alumni group from Eastern Michigan University, raised more than $50,000 for Hope through a matching gift program, the release states.
“All of this support has come together to meet a very real need. The amount of groceries given out at Hope Clinic has more than tripled in the last month…Patients with no insurance have continued to come to Hope to pick up their free prescription medications and talked to clinicians over the phone about managing chronic medical conditions while on lockdown,” said spokeswoman Emmeline Weinert.
For more information, contact Weinert at 734-484-2989, ext. 215 or email@example.com.
Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra filling families’ ears with music
The Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra has kept busy during the shutdown, contributing to several efforts to keep families entertained.
The orchestra’s YouTube music education series “Musical Minutes” was recently broadcast by Detroit Public TV, according to a release. Patients at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, as well as their families and health care staff, have been directly provided the series, as well.
The group also donated musical activity books to students in the Ypsilanti Public School District, and will be recording and sharing online their “KinderConcerts” performance for the community, the release states.
Their music can also be heard at the curbside pickup locations of Ann Arbor restaurants such as Mani Osteria, Isalita and Mikette.
Roto-Rooter store serving Washtenaw, Livingston counties is 3-D printing face masks and shields
The Roto-Rooter branch serving Washtenaw and Livingston counties has the goal of providing PPE for as many people as possible, said employee Rebecca Fields.
Family-owned for 40 years, the plumbing and drain cleaning operation is working hard to take care of people, Fields said.
“(The owners) have taken on a project with the goal of providing PPE for us and our families, and to also help equip local front line health care workers with PPE that is in scarce supply at hospitals,” she said.
The branch purchased 3-D printers to manufacture N95 masks for donation, she said. So far, Roto-Rooter has distributed more than 200 face shields and 300 masks to St. Joseph Mercy Hospital, as well as a local nursing home, she said.
In addition, they have purchased hand sanitizer to give to employees and families, she said. While they have procured material for the shields and masks with help of folks such as Scott Katke of MSW Printing in Ypsilanti, much of the cost has been out of the company’s own pockets, Fields said.
The store also has not laid off employees during this time of job insecurity, Field added.
Read more “Things that give us hope:”