Here’s to the silent heroes who are helping you and me amidst these challenging times
The COVID 19 pandemic has shaken our very existence to the core. People have lost loved ones, jobs, and have had to make drastic changes in their lives to adjust to the new normal. While some of us are looking for miracles for a return to normalcy, others have put their health and safety on the line to help save lives and keep the economy running.
These silent heroes are the Changemakers. They’re the individuals who constantly risk their lives and ensure that we have proper access to healthcare, necessities and also maintain law & order in Sri Lanka during such difficult times.
These Changemakers have been the shining light even during what appeared to be the darkest of times, with the country going through multiple lockdowns. However, the services offered by these incredible humans are often overlooked and under-appreciated.
“Before the COVID-19 outbreak, I was focused on research related to Dengue and Tuberculosis. When the first COVID-19 patient in Sri Lanka, who was a Chinese national, was discovered I was able to support my fellow medical officers due to my ability to converse in Chinese. As more cases of the disease were discovered in the country, I shifted my focus to understanding the virus better: especially its asymptomatic nature. Today, I am supporting the collection of COVID-19 samples and facilitating the research between several Institutions. As a young medical professional, I am proud to be on the frontlines of Sri Lanka’s COVID-19 response. This virus has an impact on all our lives, regardless of any religion or creed. To defeat it, we all need to work together.”
This is the story of Dr. Sathyani Wevita, a young medical researcher working at the Infectious Diseases Hospital in Sri Lanka. There are many such stories of amazing real-life heroes who are making numerous sacrifices to help build a better and safer tomorrow.
With the increasing number of COVID-19 patients, the frontline workers have been risking their lives every day for more than a year now to ensure our safety. In addition to this, most of the doctors, nurses, and responders have sacrificed being with their families to ensure the fast recovery of patients.
The digital healthcare industry during the pandemic has also drastically increased its efforts to ensure that people have timely access to healthcare and their medicines. Digital Healthcare institutes have also made it possible for home lab tests done in the safety of our homes.
The way people addressed their daily needs changed drastically due to curfews and travel restrictions. With frequent restrictions to our movements due to COVID-19, we have had to rely on delivery drivers to have food, groceries, and medicine delivered to our doorstep. On top of risks to their health, they have been working extremely hard to deliver these items in a safe and timely manner.
Photo source: Elettronika
Teachers in our country have also had to make many adjustments to continue to educate the future generation of our country. In Sri Lanka, we are used to engaging in physical classes and lectures. They’ve had to quickly adapt to technology and ensure that their students continue to receive a quality education. Through social media, we have come across many heartwarming stories of teachers adjusting to technology to give the best to their students.
We’ve also seen many stories of farmers who have been working hard daily to continue supplying the necessities. Many individuals and organizations continue to work hard to support humans, give a voice to the voiceless and even provide food and water to animals at a challenging time like this.
So how can we repay the debt we owe to these silent heroes?
We should try our very best to adhere to all the health guidelines issued by the authorities. We should reduce all non-essential movements. If we can get groceries, food, and medicine delivered to our home for almost the same price as it would cost to physically purchase these goods – shouldn’t we switch to online orders?
We should wear our masks every time we step out of our home and always keep our hands sanitized.
We should consult our doctors virtually, get our medicines delivered, and get lab tests done at our home (unless it’s absolutely important that we physically visit a hospital). All these little steps you take will immensely ease the pressure off the frontline health sector workers.
We should support small businesses whenever we can and give a generous tip to the delivery drivers whenever possible. Even if you feel like the tip isn’t enough, your little contribution can be of immense value to the delivery driver. There are a few delivery drivers out there catering to massive demand. Your kindness and compassion when dealing with any delays would also help greatly.
The pandemic has truly highlighted and strengthened the spirit of our community. Although the current situation may be difficult, we can overcome this situation together.
We, Sri Lankans, are a resilient bunch. We have overcome many tragedies before, and we’ll continue to overcome many tragedies in the future. But we can only do this together. Our country needs us in this dire hour – and it’s our duty to step up to the call.