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NGHS will get a donation of 20,000 masks Friday
Nurses and staff work in a dedicated COVID-19 Intensive Care Unit on the fifth floor of Northeast Georgia Medical Center Gainesville’s South Patient Tower. - photo by Northeast Georgia Health System

A nonprofit will be donating 20,000 surgical masks to the Northeast Georgia Health System Friday.

The Sino-USA Next Generation Foundation is based in the Atlanta area and supports low-income students in rural China by helping them with educational expenses. According to the foundation’s Facebook page, the group has made several donations to hospitals and first responders in recent weeks, including at Piedmont Fayette Hospital, the Cobb County Police Department, Ellijay Police Department, Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

According to a Facebook post, the foundation is purchasing the supplies from certified Chinese suppliers and is accepting donations for the project.   

Charlie Bao, the foundation’s president, said the group has about 50 members and while they work to help people in China get an education, members also want to give back to communities in Georgia.

“The U.S. is my nation. It’s my country,” Bao said. “I love this country, and that’s why I’d like to do something for this country during the crisis. … Under the leadership of the government and working with the whole community, we will win the battle.”

Bao said the foundation has donated to grocery stores, nursing homes and postal workers as well as health care providers in North Georgia, Atlanta and Albany. 

Bao said the foundation worked with U.S. Rep. Doug Collins’ office to coordinate the donation. 

Collins said he was grateful for the foundation’s support of the hospital.

“As we continue to fight the coronavirus outbreak, I’ve been amazed to witness the many ways our community has rallied together to support one another. All across Georgia, folks are stepping up to support our heroes fighting on the frontlines to combat this pandemic,” he said in a statement. “The Sino-USA Next Generation Foundation’s generous donation to NGMC is a shining example of this generosity. I’m thankful for their eagerness to support our health care workers here in northeast Georgia, and I hope this donation will help protect the many doctors, nurses, and staff at NGMC working tirelessly to save lives.”