By Gabriela Baron
A fundraising initiative organized by graduates of St. Theresa’s College (STC) delivered over P500,000 worth of medical supplies and in-kind donations to five hospital beneficiaries.
Launched on March 24, the “Start the Spark” project aims to raise funds for personal protective equipment (PPEs) and other medical supplies urgently needed by hospitals fighting in the frontline against the deadly coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
“The idea started when the Lung Center of the Philippines, one of the COVID-19 referral hospitals identified by the Department of Health (DOH), appealed to the public last March 23 for urgent donations of PPEs for their health workers as their remaining stocks would only be sufficient for one day,” the group said in a statement obtained by the Manila Bulletin.
In the first phase of the project, the alumnae were able to raise P205, 225 in cash donations which were used to procure medical supplies such as N95 masks, gloves, face shields, coveralls, and hospital gowns for medical frontliners of the Lung Center of the Philippines.
The project eventually expanded to include three more hospitals — Dr. Jose N. Rodriguez Memorial Medical Center, San Lazaro Hospital, and Jose R. Reyes Medical Center in the second phase.
On their third and final phase, Start the Spark project donated medical supplies to the University of Santo Tomas Hospital as tribute to COVID-19 survivor Dr. Carmina Fuentebella, an alumna of STC.
“This was also our way of supporting Dr. Carmina Fuentebella, our STC batchmate and a UST resident doctor, who courageously beat COVID-19,” the group said.
Their initial goal was to raise P50,000, but were able raise P70,000 for UST hospital surpassing their target.
To date, Start the Spark has raised a total of P596,025 in cash donations and were able to turn over 770 PPE sets, 300 coveralls, 890 KN95 masks, 1,600 surgical masks, 2,400 pairs of surgical gloves, 2,100 head caps, 408 face shields, and 2 thermal scanners to hospital beneficiaries.