Javier Castro, 52

Due to the global shortage, a company based in Garden Grove, California has transformed their metal work warehouse into a manufacturer of face shields for doctors and nurses.

Bazz Houston International Solutions, or BHI Solutions, is normally tasked with metal forming, creating springs and fabricating sheet metal.

But recently, company President Javier Castro, 52, teamed up with a fellow friend and member of Vistage CEO Group to see what they could do to address the shortage.

The organization is made up of CEOs, business owners and other key executives who come together and work on issues facing their companies.

“We met once a month, for a full-day off-site,” said Castro. “We would bring up issues that we’re dealing with and the others will give their feedback.”

Castro worked on eight different revisions of the design.

“This is totally new to us, as we make metal parts,” he said. “We bought some plastic, burned it on our laser and it worked and from there it just took off. Now we’re on a mission to make 15,000 of these things.”

BHI Solutions employees assembling face shields. (Courtesy Javier Castro)

Originally the goal was to deliver the protective gear locally, but he said they have sent the shields to New York, Florida, Texas, Tennessee, New Jersey, North Carolina and San Francisco as well as Southern California.

“Keep in mind that we are donating everything, material labor, shipping, etc., we are not charging a cent to get this protective equipment in the hands of those wonderful selfless medical professionals,” said Castro.

Castro admitted feeling disappointed in other companies that are selling the material for the face shields.

“That plastic is hard to come by and there’s a lot of companies that are doing this just for a profit,” he said.

As word started spreading, hospitals all over the United States started calling BHI Solutions. And due to connections from the Vistage CEO group, other companies found out and wanted to help.

“They were gracious enough to say, ‘Hey if this is shipping to a medical center or a hospital, we’ll pick up the fee,’” he said, highlighting the generosity of Sony executives.

Castro said Sony’s gesture saved them about $10,000 in shipping fees.

“I am blessed to work with such a great team, and the feeling is incredible every time we deliver our face shields to those that sacrifice so much for us, our families and our communities,” he said.

BHI employees have sacrificed their time to help as well. Many have volunteered nights after their workday and even on weekends. Employees have formed assembling lines and have greatly sped up the process to get the face shields out for delivery.

Medical professionals using the BHI face shields. (Courtesy Javier Castro)

Layra Gonzalez is an FIU alumni in Journalism. She enjoys creating multimedia elements and using her photography for storytelling. After graduating from FIU, she will go on to receive her Master's degree in Speech pathology.