Community empowerment vital to fight against Covid-19

by Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye


Safety is not merely about rules or regulations and procedures. It is a serious matter that affects life and death.It is about the prevention of fatal diseases or accidents that can kill or destroy the livelihood of the victims and their family members.

The real impact of diseases such as Covid-19 is better understood by the unfortunate victims and their family members.

For family members who have lost their loved ones, their lives will never be the same again.

The real challenge for our community today is to impress upon everyone the real impact that Covid-19 cause to human lives and the need for everything possible to be done for its prevention.

This is why community empowerment is so important to guide, advice and help one another to combat Covid-19.

Empowerment is defined as freedom and authority entrusted to members of a community to be proactive to pursue their vision and mission to make their community free from unwanted accidents, diseases, injuries or deaths.

When everyone in the community shares responsibility for safety and health, the community is assured of its best protection.

As such we must get the message across that safety must be accepted as a cherished personal value which must be practised in all aspects of our lives whether at the workplace, on the road, in the home, in our schools, in sports and recreation.

In the matter of combating Covid-19 no amount of efforts by the Health authorities and the frontliners can help us if the community is not prepared to empower itself to ensure the health and safety of the members of the community.

For safety to effectively encompass all aspects of life and reinforced as a shared value, lifestyle and attitude, it is vital there be involvement and participation by the community.

This can be achieved through community outreach educational programmes jointly organized by various government agencies and, professional bodies and non-government organisations.

The educational programmes should be targeted not just to the working population but to the elderly, the housewives, hawkers, shopkeepers and especially the young children.

A community that is well informed and educated about safety will naturally be one where the members of the community values and practice safety as a way of life. In communities in which where is a strong culture, the members of the community will have high expectation on safety standards and low or zero tolerance on anything that poses a hazard to the community or to individuals.

My final message is that Safety is for everyone.  Preventing harm to yourself, your family, your friends and your community gives you greater peace of mind. Let’s work together to get this important message across in our fight against Covid-19. Stay strong, be resolute and keep fighting as one Nation.


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