The Bhutan Red Cross Society (BRCS) has been supporting the government to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic from the very beginning. Moreover, even during lockdown, volunteers from BRCS are playing their own roles in respective Dzongkhags.
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, an official from BRCS said that their volunteers have travelled to remote villages to distribute essential food items to those living with disability and the poor and elderly who are directly affected by the pandemic situation.
Their aim is to ensure all elderly people having underlying health conditions have access to adequate supplies of medicines amid the pandemic, she said.
In Thimphu, during the lockdown, BRCS volunteers are the lead in dead body management and more than 20 volunteers are deployed each day in Hejo crematorium to help in crowd control, screening of people visiting the crematorium and ferrying bodies from the hospital to the crematorium. They also help prepare funeral rites.
In Sarpang, BRCS volunteers are involved in distributing vegetables and other essential goods. In addition, the coordinator was involved in assisting health officials in carrying out contact tracing of the 27-year-old COVID-19 positive patient.
In Bumthang, Red Cross Taxi volunteers are helping Wangdicholing General Hospital in reaching out medical services to the people. They are delivering medicines to patients in various parts of Bumthang who are on medication and also provide free taxi service to patients visiting the hospital and those that are discharged.
Secretary General of BRCS, Dragyel Tenzin said, “Drawing inspiration from his Majesty The King and guidance from Her Majesty The Gyaltsuen, our volunteers across all 21 branches are united and committing their time and effort to facilitate and compliment the work lead by the government.”
Before the lockdown, volunteers from Mongar went door-to-door in far flung areas to sensitize on COVID-19 and distributed medicines to senior citizens.
Samdrupjongkhar volunteers are currently stationed at the India-Bhutan border gate. Volunteers are working round the clock spraying disinfectants to sanitize vehicles entering and leaving the country.