Ohio Natural Gas and Oil Industry Steps Up to Help Communities Respond to COVID-19 Pandemic

April 15, 2020

Industry donates $19,000 in meals, technology and 100,000 pieces of personal protective equipment to support communities, first-responders

Columbus, OH – Ohio’s natural gas and oil industry joined together to help first responders, hospital workers, and school districts by donating meals, technology, and personal protective equipment, the Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program (OOGEEP) and Ohio Oil and Gas Association (OOGA) announced today.

In total, OOGEEP donated $19,000 in gift cards from local restaurants and grocery stores as well as WiFi hot spots to support student virtual learning to hospitals and schools in Newark, Marietta and St. Clairsville. OOGA worked through its members to collect and distribute over 100,000 personal protective equipment items to first responders and EMAs across southeastern Ohio.

“Ohio is a strong community and we’ve always looked out for one another, but especially during these difficult times,” said Kennedy Copeland, OOGEEP spokeswoman. “For the doctors, nurses, and medical professionals on the front lines of keeping us safe, we wanted to say thanks and provide a meal from a local restaurant.”

OOGEEP purchased 650 gift cards from Elm’s Pizza Parlor and Snapshots Coffee & Kitchen in Newark to donate to Licking Memorial Hospital. For Marietta Memorial Hospital in Washington County, OOGEEP purchased 650 gift cards from Busy Bee, an area restaurant that sources food from local farms.

To support families in St. Clairsville and students with virtual learning, OOGEEP partnered with St. Clairsville-Richland City School District to provide $3,000 in gift cards to Kroger and a $3,000 grant for the district to purchase WiFi hotspots for students.

“We’ve had a lot of difficulty getting access for some of our kids in outlying areas and we have created some drive-in WiFi access points, but still there’s people who can’t get to those,” Dr. Walter Skaggs, Superintendent of St. Clairsville Schools said. “The fact we’re able to purchase WiFi hotspots with this donation and get our kids access, that means everything to us.”

Working through its member companies, OOGA donated masks, gowns, gloves, glasses and wipes to first responders and emergency management agencies across Southeast Ohio.

“We are all facing tough times right now, but with the continued strong leadership of Governor Mike DeWine we will get through this,” Matt Hammond, president of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, said. “That is why, when the Governor asked industries across the state to donate their surplus PPE items, we worked with our member companies and gladly donated over 100,000 units of PPE to local EMAs in our operating area.” The equipment will be used by various local agencies on the front lines to continue providing emergency services while keeping responders safe.

“We have enjoyed an ongoing partnership with the natural gas industry,” Dave Ivan, director of the Belmont County Emergency Management Agency, said. “Because of that partnership they have recognized what are our needs are during these tough times and stepping up to meet those needs.”

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The Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program (OOGEEP) is a non-profit statewide education and public outreach program. Created in 1998, OOGEEP provides a variety of programs throughout the State of Ohio. These programs primarily focus on teacher workshops, scholarships, science fair, firefighter training, industry training, career and workforce development, research, landowner and guest speaker programs. Engage with us via oogeep.org, Like us Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

The Ohio Oil & Gas Association (OOGA) is a trade association dating back to 1947 with members representing the people and companies directly responsible for the production of crude oil, natural gas, and associated products in Ohio. The core OOGA membership is comprised of independent oil and natural gas producers, major national oil and natural gas producing companies, and major international oil and natural gas companies—all focused on the exploration, discovery, and production of crude oil, natural gas, and associated liquids in Ohio. Check us out at ooga.org, LinkedIn Facebook and Twitter