COVID KEY, designed by a Victoria company, is specifically made to combat the spread of COVID-19. Fifty per cent of profits will support local businesses and frontline workers. (Courtesy of Shape Design)

COVID KEY, designed by a Victoria company, is specifically made to combat the spread of COVID-19. Fifty per cent of profits will support local businesses and frontline workers. (Courtesy of Shape Design)

Victoria company designs tool to provide social distance during COVID-19

$500 gift cards will be given to frontline workers, while supporting local businesses

A Victoria company has designed a tool to help combat the spread of COVID-19: a key.

Though the ‘COVID KEY’ doesn’t unlock any doors, it’s meant to make life easier for Vancouver Islanders when they leave their homes to buy groceries and stop by essential services.

Shape Design, a Victoria-based furniture design firm, launched their ‘social distance’-inspired product on April 21. Made from acrylic, the key has curves and edges that help open handles and doors, pick up bags and press buttons. The design includes a keychain hole for easy access. It’s about twice as long as an average key.

READ MORE: Sooke mom faces ‘pandemic police’ for bringing kids to grocery store

ALSO READ: Vancouver Island pandemic postcard project asks people to share COVID-19 experiences

The key not only helps residents avoid touching items outdoors, but helps the local businesses they may visit. Fifty per cent of the profit from each key sold will be used to buy gift cards at local businesses.

With every key purchased, customers can vote for one business they want to support up until Aug. 31.

For every $2,500 raised, Shape Design will randomly select five businesses from those nominated, and gift cards worth $500 each will be bought. The cards will then be handed out to frontline workers who need them most.

In order to qualify, businesses must be located on Vancouver Island or the Gulf Islands, have a physical location, and be operating and able to provide gift cards. Notably, no home-based businesses can qualify.

Each key costs $12 before shipping.


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