Laura delivering masksThe St. Petersburg, Florida tight-knit community is relying on neighbors now more than ever. The coronavirus pandemic has had a major impact on the daily operations of senior living communities and the demand for personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gloves, masks and gowns is much greater.

Laura Bivona, a retired public health nurse and resident at Dolphin Cay, a St. Pete waterfront community, is no stranger to the new demands placed on senior living communities. Both her mother and her mother-in-law live at Addington Place at College Harbor, a premier senior living community located on the Boca Ciega Bay.

As the coronavirus pandemic swept the globe and senior living communities, including Addington Place, closed its doors to visitors, Laura stepped into action to help support her mother and mother-in-law’s home.

“I told the Addington Place staff, whatever they need, I’m across the street and can help,” said Bivona.

Laura rallied her friends and neighbors at Dolphin Cay to sew masks for Addington Place employees. Not being a sewer herself, she recruited a team with an array of talents to complete the task.

Residents and Staff“We had a group of eight helpers, and we were all given jobs- gathering materials, cutting, getting elastics for the masks and pinning the fabric before delivering them to the sewers. We even had a laundry group to wash, dry and press the masks, all while wearing masks and gloves ourselves. It was a joint effort and was just wonderful,” said Bivona.

Within four days, Laura and her group of volunteers were able to safely make and deliver 155 masks, individually bagged, to the team at Addington Place at College Harbor.Nurse wearing mask

“It was an extremely thoughtful gesture of Laura to take the time to make these masks for our team here at Addington Place. Our staff is forever grateful for her donation during this time of need,” said Justin Mock, executive director of Addington Place at College Harbor.

Laura continues to help those in need during these trying times by assisting her elderly neighbors at Dolphin Cay. Whether it’s grocery shopping, sanitizing and delivering items to their doorsteps or just checking in on those who may be alone, she is doing her part to help the St. Petersburg community.