For the past month, a "rice ATM” has been automatically dispensing free rice 24/7 to people badly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
|Poor people in Da Lat City receive rice from an automatically dispensing rice machine.
This creative effort to make sure no one is left behind has drawn praise and offers of support from nationwide.
The risk of cross-infection of COVID-19 has made it harder than usual for charitable donors to distribute relief aid. The automatic rice dispenser delivers desperately needed food to the hungry at a greatly reduced risk of community transmission.
Since April, thousands of needy people in Lam Dong province have received free rice from a "rice ATM” set up by the provincial Fatherland Front in collaboration with Linh Quang pagoda and the Hoa Sen Group, one of Vietnam’s leading steel manufacturers.
Each day, the ATM provides approximately 500kg of rice, which Venerable Thich Dinh Toan, head of Linh Quang pagoda, says was donated by many people.
"Even small donations can be a big help for disadvantaged people during this tough time. The free rice gives poor people greater trust in social assistance and upholds the Prime Minister’s directive to leave no one behind during this pandemic,” said Venerable Thich Dinh Toan.
Tran Thi Tam, a lottery ticket vendor, has benefited from the rice ATM.
"My business has been suspended for a month. I have no money to buy food. I’m very grateful for the State’s help during this difficult period. As the saying goes ‘A bite of food when you’re hungry is worth a plate of food when you’re full,’” she said.
A rice ATM built by Lao Cai College has been distributing free rice to hundreds of poor families, who are mainly Tay, Mong, and Dao ethnic minorities in Lien Minh commune, Lao Cai province.
Each poor family receives 10 kilos of rice per day. Near-poor families get 5 kilos.
|The Rice ATM in Nga Bay city, Hau Giang province
In response to social distancing, most households in the Mekong Delta have restricted their travel. Their biggest concern is finding a way to survive until the end of the epidemic.
80-year-old Ma Thi Sau of Luong Tam commune, Hau Giang province, said, "Worrying about having enough food for my family has kept me awake at night. My grandchildren asked me to go get rice from the "rice ATM” and cook it for them. They were hungry. We are so relieved to get this rice.”
Now several free rice ATMs at other localities are running at full capacity to help people survive the pandemic.
(HBO) - The Department of Health and Military High Command of northern Hoa Binh province on June 19 received 81 Vietnamese citizens returning from Angola for concentrated quarantine.
(HBO) - Starting to build the fund of "The Gratitude of Teammate” in 2013 with the purpose of supporting and helping the veterans having difficulty in housing, the Veterans’ Association of Lac Son district has always affirmed to be a pioneer in the movement "Together we can change the world”, " The leaves protect tattered ones”.
(HBO) -The program "Bank of Cows” has been implemented by the Central Committee of the Red Cross in 2010, with the objective to help the families having difficulties through the assistance of breeding cows. In the province, the program has given hundreds of cows to the poor and the people having difficulties, helping them to have the favorable conditions for developing economy and escaping poverty sustainably.
(HBO) - By the end of May 2020, the number of people participating in compulsory social insurance in the whole province was 73,796 people, reducing by 409 people (0.5%) compared to that of April 2020, increasing by 207 people (0.3%) compared to that of the same period in 2019.
(HBO) - The Mai Chau-based Regional Development Programme (under the World Vision Vietnam - WVV), in collaboration with the Department of Labour, War Invalids and Social Affairs and the Red Cross Society of Mai Chau district, on June 10 distributed essential and medical supplies to help locals in Tan Thanh, Thanh Son and Son Thuy commune in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.