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Coronavirus: 'As a healthcare worker I feel the continuous gratitude of people'

By TRISHLA SINHA
April 06, 2020 16:57 IST
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'This outbreak has really brought out the best in many people.'

IMAGE: Buses carrying students of the Vindicat association, who were on skiing holidays in a coronavirus risk area in Sestriere in Italy, return to Groningen in The Netherlands on March 7, 2020. Photograph: Piroschka Van De Wouw/Reuters

People of Indian Origin and NRIs describe the impact coronavirus is having on their lives.

Part 1 in the series: 'Our world is coming to a complete standstill'

Part 2 in the series: 'Indian Americans collected 6 months of groceries'

Part 3 in the series: 'Coronavirus: 'These are strange times'

Part 4 in the series: 'This virus has taken over the world'

Part 5 in the series: 'The virus has always felt at arm's length from me'

Part 6 in the series: 'We are now the eye of the storm'

 

Trishla Sinha, Groningen, The Netherlands

Life in Groningen, in the north of The Netherlands, has come to a standstill after our period of social distancing that started more than two weeks ago.

The normally bustling student city is like a ghost town. The university is closed till September, with many classes being moved online.

It appears that for the Dutch people toilet paper and weed are the most valuable commodities.

Within minutes of the announcement of governmental measures, toilet paper was all sold out.

And the line in front of the coffee shop was enormous.

Initially the measures of the government to prevent the outbreak of COVID-19 were unsuccessful due -- in part - to the lovely spring weather and reluctance of young people to take the virus seriously.

Once stronger regulations were passed, social distancing has become the norm.

While we are still allowed to venture out of our houses, people make sure to be at least 1.5 metres away from one another.

As a healthcare worker, I feel the continuous gratitude of people around me.

This outbreak has really brought out the best in many people.

More than 200 students have volunteered to look after the kids of healthcare workers while the schools are shut.

Phonelines have been set to connect the elderly with younger people, so that they do not feel isolated during this time.

And 'bear-hunting' initiatives have been set up for toddlers to count teddy bears, that people set near their windows in their neighborhood.

During this time, I have thought a lot about the importance of a government, which bases its decisions on advice from scientific experts and a governmental that genuinely cares about the welfare of its people.

Coronavirus measures are openly debated and the decision-making process is very transparent for the public.

The prime minister addresses the public regularly and radiates a certain calmness. but firmness.

Meanwhile the king visits various hospitals throughout the country.

The biggest outcome of this: In uncertain times in makes people a bit less stressed and a bit more hopeful.


Dear Reader:

Are you someone of Indian origin living through these challenging times somewhere abroad?

We would like to hear how you are coping and what's happening outside your window.

How it has been for you emotionally and practically?

We would like to have your observations and perspectives.

Please share your responses with us and we will publish your account right here on Rediff.com.

Do write in to us at news@rediff.co.in (Subject: Living abroad through COVID-19) along with your NAME, AGE and LOCATION.

Please don't forget to share a photograph of yourself and any significant pictures you have taken of your environment.

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TRISHLA SINHA
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