On Tuesday, December 15, 2020, during the regularly scheduled Statesboro City Council Meeting, Mayor Jonathan McCollar introduced an agenda item to recognize the efforts of local volunteer group, Squashing the Spread – Bulloch. “Squashing the Spread is a group of phenomenal individuals who have come together to work to save our community,” Mayor McCollar remarked.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Squashing the Spread has worked to distribute nearly 80,000 reusable cloth face masks to the citizens of Bulloch County. The group worked to make deliveries to schools, businesses, and organizations throughout the community, even canvassing neighborhoods and making deliveries door-to-door, covering every municipality within Bulloch County.

“This is a group that has dedicated themselves to something bigger than themselves in order to save our lives,” the Mayor explained. He went on to say, “On behalf of the Mayor and Council, and the entire City of Statesboro and County, we want to give you guys a key to the City, in recognition of everything that you guys have done.” The Mayor’s announcement was met with a round of applause from all in attendance.

Michele Martin, founder and chair of the group, was on hand virtually to represent the group and receive the Mayor’s recognition: “Thank you so much on behalf of the Squash the Spread – Bulloch team. We are honored to have distributed over 80,000 reusable face masks, and we want to say thank you to the City of Statesboro—we would not have been able to reach so many people without your support. We truly believe lives have been saved as a result of this effort,” Martin responded.

Martin went on to explain why the team was not physically present to accept the award, remarking “I would like to express our regrets for not attending in person. We don’t mean any disrespect by that, but we hope to send a message to all in attendance and all of those viewing that in order to continue “squashing the spread,” we remain cognizant of the rising cases of COVID-19 in our community and across the State of Georgia. We encourage all of our residents to continue to remain vigilant in washing your hands, watching your distance, and wearing a mask. Thank you so much. We’re so incredibly honored, and Squashing the Spread Bulloch wishes you Healthy Holidays.”

Squashing the Spread Bulloch County is a volunteer organization, formed by concerned citizens of Statesboro-Bulloch County. The mission of the group is to promote healthy behaviors related to mitigation of COVID-19 in order to slow the spread in Bulloch County. Team members include: Michele Martin, Chair; Jill Johns, Co-Chair; Shari Barr; Deb Blackburn; April Burke; Raymona Lawrence; Tracy Linderholm; Addison Mickens; Karen Naufel; Tanesha Slocumb; and Stacy Smallwood. Previous members include: Megan Hopkins. For more information, please follow the “Squashing the Spread Bulloch” Facebook page or visit SquashTheSpread.com.