For RSP owners Mike and Paul Ryan, giving back to their community in Southeastern Wisconsin is a core mission of their business. When the COVID-19 crisis began to ravage the U.S. in early 2020, they knew they had to do something to help. In those first few months of the pandemic, RSP leveraged its expertise and access to a global supply chain to procure large amounts of personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare networks and hospitals that were in dire need.
As the pandemic raged on, Mike and Paul knew there was more they could do to help. In late November, when cases swelled in Wisconsin, Mike and Paul realized they now had hundreds of thousands of masks, sanitizers, gloves, and thermometers in the company’s warehouse that needed to get into the hands of essential workers.
Faced with such a large donation of supplies, the smaller nonprofits that Mike and Paul initially reached out to weren’t equipped to manage them at scale. RSP was referred to United Way, whose large network and robust infrastructure could accept the supplies and distribute them efficiently to workers, volunteers, and the community members who could not afford these protective products.
“There was plenty of PPE for sale now in stores and on the internet,” said Mike when asked about the donation, “but many people could not afford to buy the product, so we had to find a way to get our masks and supplies to those that needed it most. Giving back is something I believe in and part of our mission, so donating these supplies was the right thing to do.”
When the United Way of Greater Milwaukee and Waukesha County shared where the 160,000 masks and other PPE items were distributed, RSP was ecstatic to hear the donation reached 65 agencies! They were spread across four counties at food pantries, homeless shelters, missions, healthcare facilities, education facilities, veterans and more. Something like this goes to show how great organizations like the United Way help our local communities.