Newcastle Falcons rugby boss Dean Richards has helped put together hundreds of personal protective equipment kits after volunteering with the police.
Richards, a former officer, contacted Northumbria Police to offer his services.
The kits have been given to response teams and frontline officers, the force said.
It said he had provided a "welcome extra set of hands".
Richards, the Falcons' director of rugby, said: "I know that at times like this people need to work together and help in any way they can.
"Thanks to Northumbria Police for letting me help in a small way. It was my privilege."
He served with Leicestershire Constabulary in the 1980s and 90s before becoming a professional rugby union player.
Supt Helena Barron said: "Dean swapped his baton for a rugby ball years ago but will always be part of the wider police family and we thank him for his help in these unprecedented times."