Translated by Diana Chang
The 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) has now spread to over 20 countries with more than confirmed 28,000 cases of the virus, and an additional 24,000 suspected cases yet to be confirmed. Tzu Chi USA formally launched its nationwide epidemic prevention campaign last week. The operation will raise funds for affected areas across China, so that healthcare professionals on the frontlines of the outbreak and their patients can have sufficient medical supplies to fight the new virus.
A meeting was held at the Tzu Chi Northridge office in collaboration with Dr. William Keh, the CEO of Tzu Chi Medical Foundation (TCMF), additional medical professionals, and university professors. Together, they arranged for a decisive gathering on February 2nd to discuss the details regarding supplying medical aid.
“The seven most needed medical supplies and materials are protective coveralls, followed by masks, which include N95 respirator masks and surgical masks, then protective eyewear,” explained Dr. William Keh. “Tzu Chi hopes to send them to Wuhan, China, or Changsha, Hunan Province, and ensure direct delivery to the acute medical units in need.”
Tzu Chi USA aims to purchase and deliver a substantial number of medical supplies to the affected areas within the shortest time possible.
Gathering Good Deeds
Holly Wang, a Northridge resident and one of the generous sponsors for this crucial fundraising campaign, had contacted Professor Bingbing Li from California State University and several doctors from UCLA in the hopes of delivering medical supplies to hospitals in affected areas in China. “Today, Tzu Chi volunteers helped organize this event together,” she shared. “So many volunteers have come to show support, and we hope the delivery of this aid will be smooth.”
The largest material contribution has been from Professor Bingbing Li. Professor Li ordered many masks and protective overalls through the school’s medical suppliers. “Friends and relatives in China are in urgent need of these medical supplies,” she said. “Especially the N95 respirator masks and protective eyewear. Tzu Chi has years of disaster relief experience around the world, and many volunteers in China. I believe we can gather everyone’s strength to complete the mission of delivering these medical supplies with love and help from the locals.” The supplies are expected to arrive around February 10th, then Tzu Chi volunteers will deliver them personally to the affected areas as soon as possible.
Ms. Baojun Cheng, a Northridge resident, came to the office with her child. She purchased eight hundred N95 masks to donate to medical professionals through Tzu Chi. “When I got these masks, my first reaction was to donate these masks to doctors on the frontlines because they can treat more patients if they’re safe. Tzu Chi started its fundraising activities just in time. I trust Tzu Chi and can rest assured that these supplies will be delivered.”
Reassured with Integrity and Trust
In addition to supplies, donations are also accepted on site. Wendy Shen, a volunteer, and her husband, Eric Wang, from the Tzu Chi Northridge office, were responsible for the event and the donations. Eric Wang, who works for Nestlé, had initiated fundraising activities and received matching donations from the company.
Dr. William Keh thanked everyone at the event with the utmost sincerity. “Master Cheng Yen reminds us to accomplish greatness from the bottom of our hearts,” he said. “A great task is what the Buddhist sutra tells us to accomplish. It is the transmission of countless people’s minds, from hundreds to millions, whether they are medical professionals, the general public, or professors. Many people came from China. In facing the suffering of the people, I’m both sad and moved; Tzu Chi’s mission is to turn compassion into action and gather everyone’s love and support. This is what we must strive to accomplish.”
Fundraising for the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Outbreak
Tzu Chi USA’s fundraising campaign, “Providing Relief During the New Coronavirus Outbreak” will be delivering truly essential aid during the 2019-nCoV outbreak. You can send your love and care by donating online; every dollar counts, and together, we can bring much-needed relief and protection for dedicated aid workers, their patients, and the residents on the frontline.