Meals for Doctors initiative sees restaurants and locals support frontline medical staff battling COVID-19
As Polish doctors treat people infected by the coronavirus, restaurants and people around the country have stepped in to make sure that they are well fed.
The number of coronavirus cases in Europe has been increasing, including in Poland, where there had been 205 cases by Tuesday morning. Doctors, nurses and other medical staff around Poland are working hard to take care of the patients.
With restaurants in Poland closed to halt the spread of the virus, except for takeout and delivery, a growing number have come forward offering to cook and donate meals to medical staff.
As part of an initiative with the hashtag #gastropomaga (gastronomy is helping), posting updates and photos on social media.
Among the restaurants helping is Muszla in the city of Gdynia, by Poland’s Baltic coast.
“The situation is difficult, we will not hide it. But our problems cannot be even partly compared to what healthcare is currently struggling with.
“Therefore, in connection with the closing of gastronomic establishments, we have decided to use our abilities to help at least a little in these difficult times,” the restaurant wrote on its Facebook page on 14 March.
In addition to delivery for customers, the restaurant has been delivering pizza to the City Hospital in Gdynia. A photo shared by it shows a stack of pizza boxes, with #gastropomaga written on the top one in black marker.
Social media shows photos of similar initiatives by restaurants around the country, from pierogi places to sushi.
In addition to doctors, the initiative extends to other professions helping maintain safety. On its Twitter account, the police in Silesia, south-western Poland, thanked the restaurant owners who shared meals with them and members of other public services.
As part of a separate campaign with the hashtag #posilekdlalekarza (a meal for a doctor) people have been donating money to buy meals for doctors. The campaign’s page on the zrzutka.pl fundraising website has already raised over 234,000 złoty (over 53,000 euros).
“To relieve doctors, nurses, ambulance crews and all those employed in medical facilities as much as possible – and let them focus on fighting the disease – we want to offer them free meals from local restaurants,” the description on the fundraising page states. https://zrzutka.pl/posilekdlalekarza
Over 4800 people have already donated, some as much as 1000 złoty (227 euros). The meals will be cooked locally by 100 or more restaurants around Poland that have gotten involved in the campaign.