FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) - The COVID-19 pandemic is a heavy weight to bear.
Especially for small businesses.
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What can you do to prevent the spread of #COVID19?— Indiana State Department of Health (@StateHealthIN) April 16, 2020
�� Stay home if you’re sick
�� Wash your hands (often)
�� Cover coughs/sneezes
�� Clean objects and surfaces
�� Wear a cloth mask in public
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Bethany Ballard, owner of Headwaters Lifestyle Company, says, “I knew that I wanted to do something when COVID-19 hit our community and do something to lift people's spirits.”
Ballard realized the Young Leaders of Northeast Indiana started a locally trending hashtag on Instagram and Facebook, #FortWayneTogether, and reached out to them seeing what could be done to help the community.
The response was overwhelming.
The partnership generated t-shirts with the logo "Fort Wayne Together," prompting over 340 shirts being shipped as of April 18.
The money obtained for each t-shirt goes toward a local business, most notably restaurants and bars that need funding to sustain them.
The Old Fort Soap Company shares the same sentiment for the community.
Co-owner, Hagan Amburgey, knows the company's handmade masks are crucial for health care workers who've picked them up with gratitude from the curbside service.
Amburgey says, "We know that when you have to go to work, especially in a time like this, to be able to have masks to protect yourself so you can keep going to work and remain healthy is very important.”
The crew at Old Fort Soap continues to make face masks and hand sanitizers now optional for the public to acquire for their health.
But like most of us, they miss when we could be clean and be together.
Amburgey says, “It would be nice to have that back where nobody’s fearful of losing somebody they love.”
If you'd like to contribute to a local business by joining the #FortWayneTogether t-shirt initiative, click here.
If you'd like a face mask or hand sanitizer from Old Fort Soap (inventory being updated), click here.