When Philomath Area Chamber of Commerce director Shelley Niemann arrived at her office Friday before noon to set up a table for distributing free personal protective equipment, people had already shown up.
But Niemann didn’t mind and when she was able to get the distribution process flowing, it remained steady throughout the three-hour window of opportunity for small businesses and organizations to pick up needed PPE items.
“There’s a need because I’m running pretty low,” Niemann said. “In fact, I’ve had to go and get more.”
Corvallis Benton County Economic Development Office distributed PPE Friday in Corvallis — an effort that was to continue today — and allocated things like masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, alcohol-free wipes and instant-read thermometers to the local chamber to hand out to small businesses and organizations in Philomath, Alsea, Blodgett and Kings Valley.
Niemann distributed items in front of the Philomath Police Station. The chamber’s office is located just inside the police station’s front entrance.
“Hand sanitizer stands were in high demand and there weren’t many of those,” Niemann said. “I did go get a couple more of those and a few more bags of the wipes. The wipes are very popular because they’re alcohol-free. Everybody’s been using hand sanitizer and it kind of dries out your hands.”
Business Oregon and 2 Towns Ciderhouse donated the PPE items.
For those who missed out on Friday’s opportunity, Niemann said there are still items available.
“We have until the end of the year to distribute all of the PPE,” Niemann said. “If you couldn’t make it today (Friday), you can just either come by my office or get in touch with me and I’ll set it aside,” Niemann said.
Niemann can be reached through email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via phone at 541-929-2454.