PEI

New Facebook group helps Islanders find out where to give and get masks

A new group on P.E.I. is helping to make sure Islanders have reusable masks, by linking up mask donors with agencies and groups in a position to receive and distribute them. 

Project aimed at helping people who may not have access to masks

Non-medical masks are now readily available for sale across Prince Edward Island. But for those who can't afford to buy them, help is on the way. (Nicola MacLeod/CBC)

A new group on P.E.I. is helping to make sure Islanders have reusable masks, by linking up mask donors with agencies and groups in a position to receive and distribute them. 

Alyssa MacKinnon and two other Charlottetown women recently launched Mask Central PEI on Facebook. 

Mask-wearing in indoor public places is now mandatory in public places, as of Nov. 20. MacKinnon said not everyone can afford to buy a reusable mask and they shouldn't have to rely on hoping disposable masks are being handed out at businesses such as shopping centres or grocery. 

"I think it was important to kind of just have a backup so that those Islanders can get their hands on a reusable mask."

Mask Central isn't intending to distribute masks, MacKinnon stressed.

Instead, it's gathering information about community groups and other agencies that are willing to take mask donations and distribute them to Islanders in need.

These groups will have to fill out a form, attesting that they are "looking to accept donations of non-medical masks to distribute in your community or to those who use your services." 

The organizers intend to post a printable list each Sunday showing the contact information and location of qualifying groups.

Not everyone can afford to buy a reusable mask, says Alyssa MacKinnon. (Credit: iStock/Getty Images)

Then Islanders with masks to spare can easily donate them, and Islanders who need masks can seek them out. 

A notice on the Mask Central Facebook page reads: "We recognize that there are many hard working groups and organizations across our Island that are already putting in the hard work of ensuring everyone in their community has a mask. We wish to simply create an easy-to-use tool for everyone to find information, all in one place."

The Mask Central Facebook page launched Tuesday night and already has more than 140 members.

More from CBC P.E.I.

With files from Island Morning

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