Stay vigilant

July 09, 2020
Rogelio S. Villa Jr.
BSP Secretary General Rogelio S. Villa Jr.

WE are living in perilous time. Nowhere in recent history where countries across the globe are getting anxious everyday over the uncontrolled spread of the dreaded Corona Virus Disease 2019 or COVID-19. Governments are scampering for measures to lessen the impact of the disease to their economy and, most importantly, to humanity.

The whole world is groping in the dark, not knowing how and when this nightmare would end. Experts fear that the deadly virus that decimated a quarter of the world population in 1918 is making a chilling comeback, under a new form, at a slower phase.

The Philippines has already breached the 50,000 mark and the figure continues to grow. This is not a matter to ignore, everybody must be aware that as the number of the infected increases, the danger of contracting the disease also increases. We just don’t know when this disease would strike our home. And when it does, misery, as we all know, follows. Our government has been doing everything in its power to control the spread of the disease, but like any other nations in the world, there is no end in sight to the infection as anti-Covid vaccines has not been developed or tested. Sooner or later, our government will take more drastic actions to mitigate the effect of the pandemic on food supply, social order, among others.

Now is the time for Scouts to be ready. Our motto “Be Prepared” must find its meaning today as we shall be constrained to apply this in any way we can. We may not be able to deal with the problem like what our dear front liners have been doing since the start of the Covid invasion, but we can help the government or, perhaps, the world in helping mitigate the spread of this dreaded disease. By being law-abiding citizens, by following the rules set by the government against the virus, we can contribute largely in winning this dangerous war.

The Department of Health has been issuing updates about the current situation and tips on avoiding contamination through proper hygiene and what we may call social distancing. We, Scouts, should listen to what the government says and be role model in following rules. Here are some tips to keep yourself from danger. Take C.A.RE

BE CONSCIOUS – As Scouts, we must be aware of the situation. We must be conscious of our surrounding, as such take proper care to lessen the probability of contamination. When in public, do not touch everything. Avoid crowded places. Be mindful of the comfort rooms and other places frequented by the people. Be wary of anyone you talk to. Always take necessary precautions when you get out of your home or, better still, stay home if you have nothing important to do outside. It is no time to socialize and it is the best time to use your mobile phones and the social media to communicate. WEAR MASK.

BE ALERT – Always be attentive of the news, be watchful of the condition in the community and be observant of what is happening in your own home.  Be wary of what you read on social media, they may be fake news. Please don’t spread fake news. Avoid sharing news on your Facebook account if you are not sure of its veracity.

BE READY – If you found yourselves facing the problem head-on, you must be prepared to take necessary actions to save yourselves, your family or the community. If you think you have the symptoms, go to the hospital and have yourself checked and treated, the same with any member of your family. Call local authorities if you think you found someone being afflicted by the disease. Always arm yourself with necessary precautionary measures by keeping alcohol, face mask, among others.

STAY HOME – Don’t get out unless necessary. Now is not the time to go malling or visiting friends or attend social events. Keep in mind that the virus chooses no one. One big handshake, a sneeze and a body contact could land you in the hospital. Worse, you may even infect your loved one, young and old alike. Staying home has been one of the many recommendations to keep us from falling sick. Follow this simple rule and you spare yourself the agony of spending time at the hospital, isolated from the rest of the world. AVOID SOCIAL CONTACT.

DON’T PANIC – Keep calm. You may even be doing more harm than good to yourself and to other people if you panic. Avoid panic-buying alcohol, soap, sanitizers and basic food supplies, other people need them too. Again, always remember that if we cannot be the solution, let us not be the problem. Panicking will only further push you to the edge and do drastic things that may even complicate the situation.

By ROGELIO S. VILLA JR.

Boy Scouts of the Philippines Secretary General