Cambodian International Student Volunteers to Fight Covid-19 in Vietnam

Wishing to contribute to the fight against Covid-19, Vann Bophathom (23 years old), a Cambodian international student of Can Tho University of Medicine and Pharmacy, has participated in pandemic prevention in Can Tho and Ho Chi Minh City.
September 15, 2021 | 23:20
Cambodian International Student Volunteers to Fight Covid-19 in Vietnam
Bophathom (right) and her teammates participated in the fight against the pandemic in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Thanhnien

Currently, Bophathom is participating in the Covid-19 fight in Ho Chi Minh City. It is known that this volunteer group consists of 250 people from Can Tho University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Bophathom is the only Cambodian international student participating in the journey.

Bophathom said that she has been involved in the fight against the pandemic since Can Tho city was social distancing. The first activity she participated in was tracing F1 in the community. Bophathom's job is to knock from door to door to record information on suspected cases of Covid-19. At any time, she is always ready to respond when receiving urgent dispatch orders.

Cambodian International Student Volunteers to Fight Covid-19 in Vietnam
Bophathom is currently an international student at Can Tho University of Medicine and Pharmacy. Photo: Thanhnien

“At this time, schoolwork has been suspended but I cannot return to Cambodia because of the complicated Covid-19 pandemic in both countries. I think this time is the most meaningful to participate in the voluntary fight against the pandemic in Vietnam. A lot of my friends who are studying abroad like me also have the same thoughts,” Bophathom said.

Then, when Can Tho University of Medicine and Pharmacy called for volunteers to participate in the green Can Tho campaign, Bophathom eagerly signed up. In 9 days, she and her teammates made continuous efforts to take thousands of Covid-19 rapid test samples for people in Ninh Kieu District (Can Tho City).

According to Bophathom, at first, her family was a bit hesitant when they heard that she had asked to join the fight against the pandemic in Ho Chi Minh City. “Going into the pandemic center, I was a little worried but not afraid. As a medical student, I determined it was my responsibility to protect the health of people everywhere. Helping Ho Chi Minh City screen for Covid-19 infections for timely treatment is a practical life-saving work. I know this campaign is a lot more difficult, but I did not hesitate when I decided to participate,” said Bophathom.

Cambodian International Student Volunteers to Fight Covid-19 in Vietnam
The Cambodian student is happy to contribute to Vietnam's fight against the Covid-19 pandemic. Photo: Thanhnien

In Ho Chi Minh City, Bophathom's main task is to coordinate with her teammates to take samples for Covid-19 test at home for people in District 11. Every day, Bophathom takes about 400 - 500 samples, then enters the data system. Work usually starts at 8 a.m., the pace of work is continuous until about 7.30 p.m. before taking a break. In addition, she also helped distribute gifts on behalf of benefactors to people in the blockade and quarantine areas.

Bophathom said: "I have a family in Cambodia, studying in Vietnam, I have good friends. I really want to contribute to the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, because Vietnam is my second homeland."

Devoted to work for the community, Bophathom's greatest joy is the negative test result. "Hopefully the pandemic will pass quickly so that everyone can return to normal life. Everyone is looking forward to the day when the streets reopen to be bustling and crowded. I also hope that day is near to be able to return to Cambodia because I was stuck here for 2 years because of the Covid-19 pandemic," said international student Bophathom.

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