Changzhou city, in Jiangsu Province in Eastern-Central China, is where Badou and Chris, two Togolese nationals who have called the prefecture-level city home for three years, are finishing another day assisting a local hospital in the fight against Coronavirus.
Black Livity China spoke to the pair to thank them for their hard work, find out more about their daily routine and why they chose to volunteer.
‘In our city, there’s a local hospital who are working hard since the outbreak began. So we decided to go down there to see how we could help out’, says Chris, an employee of Lipute Technology.
“First, we went out to be bodyguards to stop people from entering certain areas of the hospital grounds and surrounding areas. It was a contaminated area, and the hospital wanted to ensure people wouldn’t enter, so we took it upon ourselves to guard the area.”
“Later, the hospital approached us and invited us to work alongside them through this difficult period.”
The pair have since taken part in many different tasks, most recently checking the temperatures of those entering the vicinity of zones quarantined to control the spread of Coronavirus. (Official guidance suggests that body temperatures over 38.1°C in adults is a fever, an early symptom of Coronavirus.) This is a crucial time for such work, as migrant workers are returning to Changzhou in high numbers now that the Spring Festival Holiday is drawing to a close.
What motivated the pair to help out? “We hope to show our fellow Africans not to be afraid,” Badou says, “volunteering helps keep us all safe, and it protects the area. Thanks to God, we are still in good health.”
Chris continues “the first reason is to fight against this sickness.”
“We want to show our Chinese hosts that this is our home too; the fight against Coronavirus is not one that Chinese people should battle on their own.”
Although the novel Coronavirus outbreak has claimed over 800 lives and infected over 37,000 people worldwide, these two men stand brave against the risks by volunteering at this dangerous time.
Several across our communities have commended the men for stepping up to help our host country in their time of need. One commented:
When asked how others can help, and whether they should, he said “there are many volunteers already, but there is room for more. Anyone who wants to join us is more than welcome; all they need to do is come to the local hospital.”
Many African people have stepped up to support the efforts of local authorities. A Zimbabwean brother, Munyaradzi Gurure, is volunteering at the Yulin train station in the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region where he checks the body temperature of passengers at the entrance.
Others have volunteered their professional services, such as one African Doctor helping mitigate the Coronavirus outbreak.