The Belfast Media Group has distributed essential PPE items to healthcare workers and community activists leading the the fightback against the coronavirus.

The full-face visors dubbed 'Hero Shields' were manufactured this week by former baby products company Shnuggle of Co Down. Over 1,000 were bought by Belfast Media Group for community use.

Said Belfast Media Group managing director Máirtín Ó Muilleoir: "Like our readers, we have been bowled over by the heroism of those across the healthcare and community sector who have stepped up to serve others. However, we were, like everyone else, concerned to hear of the difficulties encountered by some care home staff, domiciliary workers and others working in the Covid-19 trenches, to get all the PPE they need. A particular issue for us were the community activists providing relief parcels to many of our elderly and vulnerable who are cocooned in their homes. We hope this small contribution will be of some assistance to all their inspirational efforts."

Baby product manufacturer Shnuggle retooled its plant to make Hero Shields for desperate healthcare workers
Baby product manufacturer Shnuggle retooled its plant to make Hero Shields for desperate healthcare workers

On Friday, supplies of the Hero Shields were delivered to the North Belfast food bank at Duncairn Arts Centre, to the Andersonstown relief hub at Tullymore Community Centre and to the Brooklands Care Home where staff have moved in to better support residents. 

The Belfast Media Group still has some supplies and is keen to provide them free-of-charge to community, healthcare or welfare organisations in need of PPE. If you would like to request a supply, please call 02890-619000 and leave a message on the Andersonstown News voicemail. 

Last week, the Andersonstown News reported how Argento jewellery store founder Pete Boyle had donated £10,000 to Shnuggle in Newtownards to enable the company to set up a production line for face shields. In its first week of production, Shnuggle turned out 4,000 shields, this week, its target was 140,000.

FOOD BANK ON FRONTLINE: Belfast Media Group's Máirtín Ó Muilleoir Delivering PPE face shields to the volunteers Nicola Bradley and Jackie Donnelly at the North Belfast Food Bank today
FOOD BANK ON FRONTLINE: Belfast Media Group's Máirtín Ó Muilleoir Delivering PPE face shields to the volunteers Nicola Bradley and Jackie Donnelly at the North Belfast Food Bank today