As residents of Illinois are finding a new normal amid the COVID-19 pandemic, they are also reaching out to help those with various needs.
Across the state, many co-op members and businesses are showing community spirit by sewing masks for area hospitals and first responders. Several Egyptian Electric Cooperative and Illinois Electric Cooperative members have gotten out their sewing machines and are actively stitching masks. Jo-Carroll Energy member Lindstrand Balloons USA are busy making Olson masks instead of hot air balloons.
Many co-ops and local businesses are conducting food drives and, in some locations, micro-pantries have popped up. These pantries offer a place to drop off food donations as well as somewhere for those in need to pick it up.
Galena distiller, Blaum Bros. Distilling Co., has gotten creative with the high alcohol content of their usual product and is producing hand sanitizer.
Hearts adorn many windows in some communities and in others teddy bear hunts are on the rise, all in an effort to lift spirits. The childhood favorite book, “We’re Going on a Bear Hunt,” by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury has taken on a life of its own as children in communities across the country, and possibly in your own neighborhood, are on the hunt for teddy bears peeking out of windows in homes and businesses. Families can take a walk to discover the furry friends or participate without ever leaving their cars.
EnerStar Electric Cooperative, Paris, passed out more than 500 sack lunches from a local business and plans to do so again.