ASIA/MYANMAR - Young Christian volunteers working in hospitals, on the front line against the pandemic

Wednesday, 17 June 2020 coronavirus   voluntary work   youth   local churches   catholic church  

Yangon (Agenzia Fide) - These young people are "the beautiful face of the nation", "are an example for everyone and testify that there is hope for the future". Thus the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Myanmar (CBCM) and the Council of Churches of Myanmar praise the service provided by young Christian volunteers in the fight against the pandemic, in various areas of the country. The commitment of young Christians comes after an appeal launched in recent weeks by the "National Youth Commission", which had invited young people to make their contribution to respond to the health emergency.
A large group of young volunteers assisted health workers in the fight against coronavirus by providing free service in the hospital of Okklapa in southern Yangon. Some of the Christians temporarily left their jobs to serve in the fight against the pandemic. These are eight young Catholics and four from other Christian denominations, whose commitment was highly appreciated by the director of the hospital and by the doctors and leaders of the Church who expressed the hope that young people "can inspire others to share their time, energy and service for the common good".
In the diocese of Yangon, various Catholic structures, such as St. Joseph major seminary, have been made available to host nurses, doctors, volunteers and staff engaged in the fight against the pandemic: it is a concrete aid offered by the Christian Churches who have wished to give concretely their contribution to the institutions.
Even in the diocese of Pathein, the young volunteers of "Karuna" (Burmese Caritas) are busy distributing supplies and medical devices to the city's health departments, quarantine centers and more remote villages. Isidore Saw Ko Ko of the Karuna team of the diocese told Fides that about a thousand workers and families were the beneficiaries of this aid. "We provided 683 workers with protective equipment, which is useful when they go to give vaccines to children, while over 150 people in quarantine have received face masks, hand sanitizers, soaps and protective equipment". Several villages in the Thabaung municipality have received useful materials and information to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
Bishop Raymond Sumlut Gam, President of Caritas (Karuna) in Myanmar, confirmed to Fides that "the Catholic Church in Myanmar is united in all its components, bishops, priests, religious, lay people, young people, families, in order to face the ongoing emergency and to show the face of charity, compassion, and solidarity towards the poor and suffering". (SD-PA) (Agenzia Fides, 17/6/2020)