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Part-time Antiguan resident Mark Raab may currently be 4,000 miles from his second home but that hasn’t stopped him from digging deep to send thousands of facemasks across the seas to boost the nation’s coronavirus fight.

Dutch businessman Mark Raab


Dutch businessman Mark Raab

The Dutch businessman, who owns a home in Jolly Harbour, has donated more than 17,000 surgical and KN95 masks in two recent shipments.

Raab first fell in love with Antigua as a child more than three decades ago and tells Observer he wanted to play a part in keeping its people safe from Covid-19.

The first batch of masks was distributed among government frontline workers including airport staff, police and immigration personnel.

The second shipment was delivered to community leaders yesterday to disseminate to schools, churches and homes for the elderly.

“I felt giving masks to the children would help reduce the spread among families at large and help lower Antigua’s infection rate which in turns helps tourism,” Raab, who is presently in the UK, explained. “The plan is to give five masks to as many kids as possible so they can rotate them and have a clean one each day for school.”

Pastor Deshorn David is working alongside fellow church leaders to ensure the masks reach those most in need.

“Personal protective equipment like masks has become an essential part of life and it’s very important for us all to help in any way possible to curb the spread of Covid-19,” he said.

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