|Youth volunteers in Tam Bình Ward, Thủ Đức District help with the housework at an elderly person's house. — Photo tuoitre.vn
HCM CITY — Youth volunteers in HCM City have been lending a hand to support vulnerable elders in the city during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hearing the phone ring at the District 1 Youth Union, Đinh Gia Viễn immediately answers.
He is a member of the youth volunteer team set up to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The caller is an old woman who asks him to go to the supermarket for her to pick up some food.
Viễn sets off for the supermarket and buys five kilos of rice, one kilo of pork, some garlic and vegetables and takes it round to Nguyễn Thị Điệp’s house on Nguyễn Thị Minh Khai Street.
Điệp told Tuổi trẻ (Youth) newspaper that she had called the volunteers several times and received enthusiastic support.
Điệp also offers his services to other elderly people.
Viễn said he lived alone and rarely went to the supermarket, but since he joined the team he knows where everything is.
“Elderly folk should stay at home to avoid the disease, so I’m ready to help them. It’s not only good for them but I can also learn more life skills,” he said.
District 1 Youth Union has more than 30 volunteers, thus each ward will have two volunteers to get ready to help the locals.
Trần Đỗ Nam Long, secretary of the District 1 Youth Union, said that the quick response team was founded after the Ministry of Health warned that the elderly should stay at home to avoid the disease.
The district has delivered leaflets with a hotline 02838251861 to every street so that residents in need and call the volunteers.
Ngọc Linh and Thảo Vy are youth volunteers in Tam Bình Ward, Thủ Đức District who were sent to assist Nguyễn Thị Sáu, 83.
Sáu is weak due to old age and her children live far away, so Linh and Vy visit her small house every day to help clean and cook meals.
Linh, 20, is a second year student at the Nguyễn Tất Thành University, and Vy, 16, is a 10th grader. They've been part of the volunteer team in Tam Bình Ward for nearly a month. The team has more than 10 members and most of them are students.
They divide the work into groups of two to three members and visit elderly people’s homes to help them with daily chores.
Loan, another volunteer, said: “Many of them are very weak, and sometimes they are unable to dress themselves.”
Trần Lý Minh Nhật, secretary of the Tam Bình Ward Youth Union, said all the volunteers had joined the team with the spirit of “no one is left behind”. — VNS