Across China: "Childish" slogans lighten mood amid epidemic

Source: Xinhua| 2020-02-06 13:34:57|Editor: huaxia

NANJING, Feb. 6 (Xinhua) -- When a slogan in a sweet, soft childish tone blares out from a community loudspeaker, the tense look of local residents amid the epidemic seems to relax.

"Hello everyone, this is a little reminder that it would be safer to stay at home, and there's no need to be too nervous about the novel coronavirus," the voice is from 8-year-old Cookie Jiang, in Xuanwu District in Nanjing, east China's Jiangsu Province.

As the whole nation is making every effort to curb the spread of the new pathogen, community staff have taken over an important task in spreading scientific knowledge of coronavirus prevention, and using loudspeakers to patrol in the community has become an effective method.

But the community is limited in manpower, so they put out a call for volunteers. "The volunteers are from all walks of life and of all age groups. As more cases of infections are reported, people are getting more upset, and we think letting the kids read out the slogans will help ease their mood," said Li Xiaowei with the community committee.

"When I heard the cute and adorable voice from the broadcast, I couldn't help but smile from the bottom of my heart," said Kang Yan, a local resident. "Some of them tried to copy an adult's tone, while some are more in a light vein, both of which amused us under the shadow of the virus outbreak."

Authorities at every level in China are using their wits to popularize knowledge of the prevention and control of the novel virus. Two anchors in the city of Suqian have used local dialect and refuted with good humor 10 folk remedies that falsely claimed to be helpful in treating the virus.

"Can garlic function as a medicine to cure the coronavirus? No, it can't. But its smell can make you feel alone in the crowd," said the anchor.

"It's quite normal to feel anxious and panic when a public health issue appears," said Zong Wei, a head nurse with the psychological department of Nanjing Brain Hospital. She has received many calls seeking psychological counseling since the outbreak.

"Most expressed worries about the novel coronavirus when they saw the number of confirmed cases continue to rise," said Zong, "and that excessive anxiety may lead to insomnia and weaken people's immune system."

Therefore, the Jiangsu suicide prevention hotline, which is usually only open on weekdays, is now also available on weekends and holidays. The province also set up a 24-hour online platform for those who are mentally affected by the epidemic, which has now become a common practice in many provinces and municipalities in China.

"Regular rest and paying more attention to personal hobbies can help alleviate pressure, and staying positive is the most important factor of all," said Zong. "We should all believe that the epidemic will end and spring is coming."