CORONAVIRUS

The people of Kilkenny are equal to this challenge

Community leaders say we must be resilient, look after one another - and listen to the experts

Sam Matthews

Reporter:

Sam Matthews

Email:

sam.matthews@kilkennypeople.ie

KILKENNY

We will get back to what we have always done. In the meantime, we need to adapt to this situation

The people of Kilkenny are resilient and equal to the challenge of the coronavirus — but we must be united, look out for one another, and we absolutely must heed the advice of experts now and in the coming weeks.

So say community leaders, including senior hurling manager Brian Cody, Bishop of Ossory Dermot Farrell, the Mayor of Kilkenny and the council chairman. They say medical staff and the most vulnerable in society are counting on us all to do our part. Many here have already taken up the baton, volunteering to deliver meals to people or help out in some other way.

“The thing to do is to listen to the doctors, the HSE, and the experts — with the public working together and looking out for the most vulnerable,” says hurling legend Cody.

“We will get back to what we have always done. In the meantime, we need to adapt to this situation. We need to fill our days with something - there is not a huge amount anyone can do, but keep in contact with each other. We use technology so much when things are normal; we can use it now in a meaningful way.

“None of us have all the answers: the GPs and the doctors have some, and they are putting themselves out there and going the extra mile. The way we can help is to listen to them. Doctors, nurses, and so many people in the firing line are just seeing it as doing their duty, and we can help them by doing the right thing.”

Cathaoirleach of Kilkenny County Council Peter ‘Chap’ Cleere says the pandemic represents an unprecedented challenge to the people of Kilkenny and Ireland — but one that we can meet.

“Every aspect of our public service and private sector will come under extraordinary pressure and every citizen in every community will be required to play their part, says Cllr Cleere.

“However, I have absolutely no doubt in my mind that the people of Kilkenny are equal to this challenge.”

Cllr Cleere said the manner in which the entire medical community has come together in the face of this threat has been inspirational.

“Kilkenny has a deep understanding and love for community,” he said.

“We need to draw on our deepest values and harness that community spirit. The advice on what each of us needs to do is clear: we all need to follow that advice — not just for our own health, but for the benefit of all those around us. Each one of us needs to think of vulnerable people in our midst and ask ourselves what we can do to help them through this.

“Covid-19 will pass. By staying strong and united in our communities we will minimise the damage that it causes. Together we will show our enormous spirit and resilience and we will beat this. Stay safe, and mind each other.”