Local Family Donates 30,000 Masks With Help of Churches

A local family recently used their connections abroad to procure surgical facemasks to donate to nearby hospitals as they struggle for supplies during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Karissa Ho, a junior at Mayfield Senior School, and her father donated the 30,000 masks over the past two weeks to a variety of local hospitals, including to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Keck Medicine of USC, Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, Good Samaritan Hospital and the Kaiser Permanente campuses. The masks were acquired through donations from a variety of churches in China and Taiwan, with whom Ho said her family has cultivated ties throughout the years for their shared faiths.
When Mayfield joined other schools in closing down facilities and transitioning to remote learning, Ho said she and her family fell back on a familiar question they task themselves with.
“We’re always, always asking ourselves if we’ve done enough to help our community,” she said in a phone interview. “Everything from supporting local businesses and ordering takeout to making this mask delivery situation, we’ve really been trying to help our community as much as possible. I’m very grateful we have these resources and I’m very privileged to be able to help out. We’re trying to make the best with what we have.”
Ho said she and her family, who live in South Pasadena, also are using donated funds from those churches to acquire the N95 masks considered most effective at preventing the spread of the coronavirus which causes COVID-19, which they plan to donate to hospitals in need.
In putting the project together, Ho said she and her family wanted to simply show what community effort looks like and also push back against reports of xenophobia toward Chinese and other Asian residents, which stems from the origin of the outbreak in China.
Ho added that it was a treat to be able to thank hospital workers in person when donating the masks.
“It was really eye-opening just to be able to thank the people who are putting themselves at risk to help others every day,” she said. “I really hope we can all band together in this time of crisis.”

Local Business Pair Donate $50k, Urge Others to Join Effort

As the grim reality of an unraveling economy begins to grip Pasadena, with nearly 20 million Americans filing for unemployment aid since coronavirus precautions have shut down businesses, many local nonprofit organizations have been scrambling to put emergency services into place and ramp up operations to meet the rise in needs, from food insecurity to homelessness to social services.
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Rusnak Auto Group Donates $100,000 to Cancer Support Community

Photo courtesy CSCP Celebrating the $100,000 donation are Meg Symes, Cancer Support Community’s executive director; Paul Rusnak, founder and chairman of Rusnak Auto Group; Liz Rusnak Arizmendi, vice president of public relations at Rusnak Auto Group; Michael Healy, CSCP board president; and Patricia Ostiller, CSCP director of development.
Photo courtesy CSCP
Celebrating the $100,000 donation are Meg Symes, Cancer Support Community’s executive director; Paul Rusnak, founder and chairman of Rusnak Auto Group; Liz Rusnak Arizmendi, vice president of public relations at Rusnak Auto Group; Michael Healy, CSCP board president; and Patricia Ostiller, CSCP director of development.

Cancer Support Community Pasadena recently received an unprecedented $100,000 matching gift from Rusnak Auto Group. Paul Rusnak, founder of Rusnak Auto Group, had announced a matching challenge of $100,000 at CSCP’s annual gala five months ago.
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