Since the early stage of the coronavirus outbreak in China way back in Jan 2020, I was tuning into news channels from Taiwan and Hong Kong for developments of the outbreak in mainland China. I was receiving information on the fly on status and updates.

Shadows of uncertainty

Soon, most of my news app I was following started to get inundated with coronavirus related news; where almost every article carried the C word in its title.

All signs were pointing to an escalating disaster and  an inevitable doomsday. And sure enough, the virus went global and is now declared pandemic.

Whatever we focus on becomes larger. It’s the same with bad news. After a while, we will start to anticipate more bad news and believe the worst.

It is no wonder why many will start to fall into depressions.

Singapore’s Ministry of Health online update and WHO site on coronavirus infections were the targets of my daily pilgrimages. Gradually, I moved from tracking the numbers of infected cases, to tracking the number of discharged cases.

I decided to seek the positives instead.

Call for Solidarity

In the midst of the Wuhan lockdown, people remained positive.

We started see heartening footages of Chinese, cheering each other as they wait out the growing epidemic, shouting “武汉,加油!”, or “Brace on! Wuhan!”. There were also random and spontaneous acts of kindness – one of which was a grainy CCTV footages of someone who left a stack of surgical masks at their local police station in China.

Artists wrote songs to bring encouragement and hopes during these dark hours.

In Italy, another epicenter of the COVID19, Italians are beating the social isolation during coronavirus lockdown by taking to their windows and singing in unison.  There are many more incidences like these calling for solidarity, if we start looking.

Community in action

Closer to home, there were some heartwarming stories and random acts of kindness

Someone took onto herself to provide 6,600 surgical masks for Singaporeans torn between the depleting stocks of masks and the hiked prices imposed by retailers.

Malaysian government announcement of a 2-week long travel restriction in a bid to contain the COVID19 outbreak within a 48-hour notice. The move affected 400,000 Malaysians who commute to Singapore daily for work and studies.

Businesses and the community came together to secure accommodation for Malaysians before the two-week-long travel restrictions kick in. Some delivered toiletries to the stranded Malaysians who had yet to find accommodation and were sleeping at the train stations.

Pockets of people in the local community are reaching out to healthcare workers who risk their lives on the frontline. They offered their support in various ways. They include:

  • Delivering of food and care packages
  • Funding of transport vouchers to healthcare workers in hospitals and polyclinics that give help to community partners supporting vulnerable communities, such as seniors and families who are impacted by this crisis.
  • Many eateries have also offered discounts or free meals to healthcare workers on the front lines

Around the world,  businesses are starting to re-deploy their manufacturing facilities to supply critical medical supplies. Among those in short supplies hand sanitizer gels, hospital gowns, protective masks, gloves, ventilators, etc.

Razer, Tesla, LVHM and Inditex are just some of the businesses who have step out to help and donate.

Save your breath for what really matters

It is not worthwhile to engage in debates and commentaries, especially those on political leaders who obviously have no clues what they ought to be doing.

Instead, seek evidences of humanity at its best and share them to cheer each other on.

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