SCOUTS HELPING THE FRONTLINERS
SCOUTS HELPING THE FRONTLINERS
It was a truly difficult time for all of us. Scouting events and activities had to be called off, for that we worry the safety of our members all around the world. There is no time to gloom about not being able to attend a gathering, for that our health are at stake. Scouting can wait. This outbreak affects us all, and yet it also calls upon our better judgement to do our part in being an active citiven by reminding each other to protect the health and safety of all those around us.
It is no different here in Malaysia. Hundreds were diagnosed with this disease each day, which at this point of writing, yet to have a cure. Such situation is truly unprecedented, we were forced to stay home for weeks while the frontliners battle their soul to overcome this Pandemic. True, things are much controlled now but precaution is still needed at all times.
Even as a scout, there is not much for us to offer. We lack the experties to be on the battlefield against this invicible army. Every person is at risk. The government of Malaysia commenced an order to restrict movement of surveillance to flatten the curve of this outbreak. Still, we scouts could not really help but to wonder , “If only I can help,
The increasing number of Covid-19 cases forced an increasing demand for personal protective equipment(PPE) and other medical supplies. Some hospital operator forced to stop treatment amid shortage of PPE. At one point, Mrs Azlin Mat Nor had already start to assembly pieces of materials to create a DIY Face Shield. Despite such creation has been around for quite some time, Mrs Azlin and a group of Rovers from Blackflurry Rovers Crew, Kelantan took the effort to assemble the face shield in a big quantity. The equipment is made up of materials such as transparent sheet, rubber band and sponge. The product will then be disinfected to ensure the usage of such equipments are safe and that the frontliners are not inadvertently harmed. Meanwhile, a similar approach was taken by State Chief Commisioner Prof. Dr.Mustaffa, who produced 3D-printed face shields for frontliners in Kluang Hospital.
The words got around very quickly. At this moment, the Government of Malaysia through the National Youth Council (MBM) had allocated a small sum of money for the purpose of youth volunteerism in the midst of this pandemic ; the Scouts Association of Malaysia were not excluded. Here, The National Rovers Council initiated a nationwide initiative of producing face shield , similar to the ones initiated by Mrs Azlin. Medical and Quarantine centres were contacted and consulted. True enough, they are in need of PPEs. Despite the government’s Restricted Movement Order, the scouts risk their health to get their supplies as necessary and produces the face shield in bulk. At this point, many parties and organisations come together regardless of differences.The scouts received generous donations which allow us to produce more and more face shields. The National Chief Commisioner of Scouts Association of Malaysia(PPM) is in full support of the rovers. He as a medical office himself believe that such effort to win this “war” should be welcomed but with precautions.
Personally, I managed to produce a small amount of PPEs for the public in Penang area. Despite the state Rovers Council absenties in the production, me and my family is in full support to try our best to produce PPEs according to the assembly guidelines as provided by other troops and groups of volunteers. A total of 100 units were produced and distributed to a local clinic. Afterall, a small helping hand is all it takes to show we care.
While a section of scouts were busy preparing PPEs, the national Global Initiatives unit and other committee conducted numerous online workshops and training to sustain interactions and learning among members. Particularly, Quiz on SDGs initiated by PPM’s SDGs unit receive critical aclaim. International participants did not miss their chance to participate in this virtual event. Per day, a quiz comprising around 20 questions were published according to each SDGs goal.
To date, a total of one hundred and thirty four thousands three hundred and ninety four units ( 134,394 units) of face shields were produced and distributed in total. Production ceased as the scouts were informed of having sufficient number of PPEs supplied to the frontliners. Despite so, they’re ever ready for what lies ahead. What scouts has done during the pandemic is a lesson to take and an example to follow. One can never tell if things will get better or worse from this point of time. But isn’t it what we all are about? Being prepared. Prepared to serve, prepare to sacrifice.
Scouting, creating a better world.