Upper Beaches neighbourhood bangs pots, pans to cheer for healthcare workers
Published Saturday, March 28, 2020 8:43PM EDT
Last Updated Monday, March 30, 2020 5:08PM EDT
For about two minutes every night, an Upper Beaches street is filled with the sound of banging pots and pans as residents show their appreciation to hundreds of frontline workers fighting the COVID-19 crisis.
"The neighbours all come out with their implements of noise, and we bang pots and pans in support of the frontline workers, all the people that are in the hospitals in the nursing homes in the grocery store and the LCBO. All the important places that need to stay open for us," said Joan Weed, who lives on Osborne Avenue, near Main and Gerrard streets, where residents come out at around 7:30 p.m. to cheer on essential workers using housewares.
Weed, who knows several doctors and nurses, said the workers are happy that it is happening, adding that the gesture is a way to acknowledge the efforts frontline workers are doing to save COVID-19 patients.
The phenomenon has been going on around the world since the coronavirus outbreak began. Videos of people clapping from their balconies in solidarity of the healthcare workers have been posted on social media.
The Registered Nurses' Association launched the #TogetherWeCanDoIt campaign last week to show support to all healthcare workers who are bravely battling the COVID-19 pandemic. The association asked Ontarians to step out onto a porch, balcony, or an open window and cheer for all the workers.
"It's getting beautiful marks," Weed said about the celebratory kettle she's been using to cheer. "And I look at those, and I go, 'Yep, I'll always remember where those marks came from.'"
She said the short time also gives her a chance to see the smiling faces of her neighbours, whom she has rarely seen to adhere to social distancing.
"So, it's a little bit of a pick me up at the end of the day," Weed said.
As of Saturday, there are more than 1,100 COVID-19 cases in Ontario, including 19 fatalities. In Canada, there are 5,600 virus infections.
The worldwide death toll has surpassed 30,000, with more than 660,000 confirmed cases, according to a tally by John Hopkins University.
Yolanda Bronstein, who works in administration at a hospital, said she has been getting updates on what it's like on the front lines, and she knows this small gesture means a lot to the healthcare workers.
She said there is a lot of uncertainty on when the pandemic will be over, so this event Bronstein said also brings a sense of community, especially with everyone cooped up indoors.
"We have each other, and that's why this nightly event really means a lot."
Her message to the healthcare workers: "Thank you."
Peel police, paramedics, and Brampton fire showed their appreciation to the healtcare workers at William Osler Health System hospital on Saturday by doing laps around the building while flashing their siren lights.