During this unique period when only essential workers are employed, outside activities are limited and Coronado residents are observing the self-distancing sequestration suggestions, reading about the consideration and thoughtfulness of the average citizen is uplifting. With so much tragedy and criticism of the efforts to deliver us from this pandemic in the media, hearing accounts of the goodness in the world reassures us that the lights still shine in people.
Besides the essential workers who keep us safe, fed, and maintaining a semblance of normalcy, unsung heroes are delivering groceries for neighbors and family members, calling to check on the elderly or lonely, and dropping treats on porches to brighten the day. They seldom receive the deserved recognition since they seek none.
Coronado has five P.E.O. chapters with membership over two hundred. P.E.O., a Philanthropic Educational Organization for women, is known for being a thoughtful, active force in communities. During the wars they collected food and clothing to distribute to those in need. During peacetime, they continue to find ways to contribute to making the world or one life better.
The organization is also noted for its members being supportive sisters to its fellow members. Not surprising, Chapter UD in Coronado “decided to support ‘sisters helping sisters’ by making masks for the Chapter members as well as their families.”
Spear headed by Ann Goodfellow, who was the first seamstress for the project, the venture took off and started a whirlwind of activity for the group, rendering hundreds of masks for chapter members and their families. Other seamstresses quickly joined the group: Gwen Bent, Jauhree Walker and Lyn Perino. Once the chapter needs were fulfilled, the women expanded their project to create masks for friends, friends of friends, and extended community members. If someone mentioned needing a mask for a baby, grandchild, or essential worker, the seamstresses accommodated them.
Those UD members who did not sew participated by donating material and lining and delivering the masks to the recipients. Distributing masks was not only a useful project but one that brought genuine satisfaction as members saw the smiles when the masks were delivered and stories were related. Charlotte Rudowicz, president of Chapter UD, said, “[I continue] to be proud of the efforts of many sisters who participated in donating materials, making the masks and delivering with love. Seeing the joy in families early in this mask wearing experience was, and still is, a real joy.”
Lyn Perino explained that, “‘Sisters helping sisters’ is an ongoing project for Chapter UD. During the year, sisters ask other sisters to drive them to appointments, make desserts, help organize a space, make cards by painting or photography, etcetera. Sisters (recipients of the aid) put money in the Blessing Box for all these services, and the money is given to various P.E.O. scholarship funds for women.”
Many local organizations are striving to find ways to contribute to our community in this unfamiliar era. Citizens helping citizens in Coronado is not unusual, but finding a universal need and organizing others to make it happen is noteworthy. Well done, Chapter UD.