‘Part of the community’
In a generous effort to help save lives during the COVID-19 pandemic, Tufts parents Daisy Liu, A17P, A21P, and Bin Lin, A17P, A21P, have donated 80,000 face masks and 10,000 pairs of goggles to Tufts Medical Center.
The couple, who are parents to Sophia, A17, Sabrina, A21, and a younger daughter, were forced to extend a winter trip to see their older daughters in New York City because the coronavirus was spreading rapidly in China and they couldn’t return to Beijing. Once they were able to go home in late March, they watched from afar as cases of COVID-19 rapidly increased in the United States—particularly in New York and Massachusetts, where Sophia and Sabrina live.
The couple decided to help, and in early April, the Bin Lin and Daisy Liu Family Foundation shipped the goggles and masks to Boston.
The family had already sent masks to friends in the United States, “and at the same time we were thinking maybe we could do something for the Tufts community,” Liu said. An email to Asia Relations & Development Director Ming Zhong confirmed Tufts Medical Center’s need for personal protective equipment (PPE).
With that, Liu got to work. She quickly learned that while other PPE remained in short supply, masks and goggles were available. Procuring those proved relatively easy. “To find the PPE, we used a very good channel through my husband’s company’s foundation,” Liu said.
Getting the equipment from China to Boston was trickier. “This is our first experience doing that. We are not in this kind of business,” Liu explained with a laugh. “The first shipment took almost a month from purchase to delivery. The second shipment even longer.” She worried that the masks and goggles wouldn’t be needed by the time the donation arrived. “But we looked at the numbers [of COVID-19 cases] in the Boston area, and still they were going up and up.”
The donation helped fill an urgent demand. “I appreciate their efforts and what it took to coordinate the procurement and shipment of these vital items,” Tufts President Anthony P. Monaco said. “Their gift will have a direct impact on those who need it most.”
This wasn’t Liu and Lin’s first donation to Tufts Medical Center. While the couple and their youngest daughter were waylaid in the United States earlier this year, a group of parents based mostly in China, as well as in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and the United States, was fundraising to donate face masks to the medical center. “At that time, we just donated some money,” Liu said, adding that the group quickly and efficiently provided 31,000 masks to Tufts Medical Center.
Reflecting on her family foundation’s gift, Liu is modest. “It’s not something special,” she said. “We are always trying to be part of the community, trying to make a contribution if we can. We are more connected with Tufts than anyplace else and we have been to the Boston area lots of times. So when we’re thinking about donating, it’s very genuine; Tufts is always top of mind when our family foundation wants to do something.”