by Marilyn Peh on

Amid the bad news surrounding the novel coronavirus (nCov) virus here in Singapore and beyond our shores, a heartwarming act of kindness in the heartlands has restored our faith in humanity.

Local Facebook community page Collike yesterday posted a report of a bottle of hand sanitiser and face masks placed by an anonymous person in the lift at Block 267B Punggol Field.

Even more remarkably, despite the fact that face masks are in short supply in stores islandwide, the single act of kindness inspired more neighbours to pay it forward, chipping in with their own items.

Part of the post, which was written in both English and Chinese, said: “The spirit of kindness spread as other neighbours began to contribute surgical masks, alcohol wipes, N95 masks and children’s masks. This is a block that is full of warmth and humanity.

“Wuhan virus, disappear! Instead, neighbourliness should be what spreads in Singapore.”

Image Source: Facebook / Collike

A handwritten note left with the hand sanitizer told residents to use what they needed and to disinfect their hands before going home. Other notes advised residents to use the free masks in “danger zones”, and to take one if they needed it.

The post was widely shared online and drew praise from some commentators who lauded the unknown Good Samaritans for their kindness and generosity.

One wrote: “If we all behave like this, instead of being kiasi and kiasu, we will be so much better off! Keep it up.”

Another said: “I’m delighted and proud of our fellow Singaporeans for doing this… People always say that we are self-centred… This shows that if we want (to be kind), we can. Let’s all start to share and care to help one another.”

One user highlighted a similar initiative, nearby at Block 665B Punggol Drive. On the note left by the person who left the bottle of hand sanitiser, other residents had scribbled words of appreciation.

Image Source: Facebook / Agnes Chong

In other news, students at the National University of Singapore (NUS) are voluntarily delivering food thrice a day to their peers placed under a 14-day leave of absence at the university’s residential colleges. Some others have also taken to delivering handwritten notes of support to these students.

A Telegram chat group has also been set up to help the students stay connected. Mr Michael Ang, a residential assistant, told The Straits Times: “Because the students don’t get much face-to-face interaction, we use the chat group to check in on them and drop them messages to let them know their meals have been delivered.”

And while there have been reports of online sellers trying to profiteer off the shortage of masks in Singapore, some on Carousell have offered free masks to those who need it.

One seller, @carwerkz.com, wrote that a customer was inspired by their first post and decided to donate two boxes of surgical masks for them to give away to others.

Image Source: Carousell

These acts of kindness are a timely reminder that looking out for each other in the true spirit of community can help us overcome any crisis, together.

For information on how and when to use masks, refer to HealthHub’s recommendations here.