The Westmoreland’s Staff Aims to Help Community with COVID-19 Outreach Efforts

GREENSBURG, PA (May 6, 2020) – The Westmoreland Museum of American Art is proud to announce two community outreach efforts – Postcards that Care and the Free Face Coverings Project – spearheaded by members of the Museum staff wanting to give back to the community at this unprecedented time.

Beginning in mid-March, the staff set to work on the Postcards that Care initiative. Over a dozen different staff members became involved in writing heartfelt messages to seniors on postcards normally sold in the Museum Shop that feature images of artworks from The Westmoreland’s permanent collection. Then, collaborating with other non-profit organizations, including Westmoreland County Area Agency on Aging and Tri-City Meals on Wheels, the hand-written postcards were distributed to nearly 500 seniors. The messaging on the postcards encourages the seniors to write back to the Museum if they would like in which case a member of the Museum staff will be assigned as their pen pal. This is an ongoing effort with plans to expand through partnerships with other non-profits serving seniors in the coming weeks.

“Thinking about the heightened level of isolation that many senior citizens in our community may be experiencing right now, we wanted to reach these seniors in a manner that would be very personal. So, what better way than sending a hand-written note,” stated Anne Kraybill, the Richard M. Scaife Director of the Museum. “I am so moved by the dedication our staff has displayed to get this initiative off the ground and hope that we are helping to brighten the day of the seniors receiving these postcards.”

Additionally, several staff members have lent their sewing talents to create face coverings for those in the community who may not have access to these otherwise. The Free Face Coverings Project was launched just this week, however the staff members have been working to sew the washable and reusable masks for the past several weeks. The Museum will place three individually packaged face coverings per day, Monday through Friday, in the Little Free Library located at the Museum’s north entrance on Academy Hill Place. Members of the community in need of masks may pick these up after 10am every weekday when the face coverings will be restocked, and this will continue until supplies run out. Inside the packages, instructions are provided on the recommended use and sanitation for the reusable face coverings.

“The Little Free Library does have a knob touchpoint that will be sanitized daily, but when picking up a face covering, we ask that you please practice social distancing and take precautions, like using a clean tissue or wearing a glove. After you pick up one of the fabric face coverings, please wash before wearing,” indicated Randall Oaks, Director of Visitor Experiences and Events, who helped to facilitate both community outreach efforts.

Click here to learn more about these COVID-19 community outreach efforts.

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About The Westmoreland Museum of American Art:

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, The Westmoreland Museum of American Art will remain temporarily closed to the public until further notice. For the latest information from the Museum regarding this temporary closure, please click here, and, for information on ways to connect with the Museum from your home, please click here. Western Pennsylvania’s only museum dedicated to American art, The Westmoreland Museum of American Art in Greensburg, Pennsylvania, is a place to share meaningful cultural experiences that open the door to new ideas, perspectives and possibilities. The Westmoreland’s extraordinary permanent collection, with its strong focus on the art and artists of Southwestern Pennsylvania, is complemented by an impressive schedule of temporary exhibitions featuring both nationally traveling exhibitions and those organized by the Museum as well as community-oriented programming and special events. More information is available at thewestmoreland.org and on the Museum’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram profiles.

 

CONTACTS:
Claire Ertl
Director of Marketing & Public Relations
certl@thewestmoreland.org

Maggie Geier
Manager of Communications
mgeier@thewestmoreland.org