Korea, UNICEF give Guyana 40,000 high-quality face masks

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The Republic of Korea, through the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), has donated 40,000 pieces of high-quality KF94 face masks to the Government of Guyana to help frontline health and child protection workers protect themselves from becoming infected with COVID-19.

UNICEF, in a statement, said the masks, which have been delivered to the ministries of Health and the Ministry of Human Services and Social Security, can filter out SARS-CoV-2 particles which are responsible for the COVID-19 disease.

At brief handover ceremonies on Friday, UNICEF Representative Mr. Nicolas Pron said that the donation stemmed from the long-standing partnership between the Republic of Korea and UNICEF.

From left, Honourary Consul of the Republic of Korea in Guyana, Mr. Ramesh Dookhoo; Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony; UNICEF Representative, Mr. Nicolas Pron and UNICEF Deputy Representative, Irfan Akhta,r at the symbolic handover of 20,000 pieces of high-quality KF94 face masks to the Ministry of Health

“Our healthcare and child protection workers are on the frontlines every day ensuring that children, families, and all Guyana are able to receive necessary services and it is important that they receive the best protection possible to enable them to continue their hard work. This donation will contribute positively towards protecting those key frontline workers as all partners work to contain and end the pandemic,” said Mr. Pron.

“This donation of masks is our expression of solidarity and cooperation with the government and the people of Guyana in dealing with the pandemic. It is my sincere hope that this donation will help towards overcoming the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic in Guyana,” said Mr. Seung-chul Yeo, Chargé d’Affaires of the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in Caracas, Venezuela.

“I also would like to extend my gratitude to UNICEF for its hard work and cooperation, in particular for the coordination and final handover of this donation,” Mr. Yeo added.

Minister of Health Dr Frank Anthony welcomed the donation.

“The Government of Guyana thanks the Government and people of the Republic of Korea, and UNICEF for their generous donation which will assist in the protection of our health care workers, who are working tirelessly to provide the highest standard of care for their patients,” said Dr. Anthony.

Minister of Human Services and Social Security, Dr Vindhya Persaud, also expressed appreciation.

“We would like to convey our thanks to the Government and people of South Korea for this timely contribution. It is deeply appreciated, as the Ministry of Human Services and Social Security’s frontline workers have been, continue to and will be continuing to deliver services to the vulnerable, including the elderly, the differently-abled and persons who need their pension and public assistance.

“The personal protective equipment will ensure our frontline workers remain safe because it is not only about the delivery of services and ensuring people get these services but is about keeping our officers safe because they have families and we appreciate their contribution every day. So thank you to the people of South Korea.”

Honorary Consul of the Republic of Korea in Guyana, Mr. Ramesh Dookhoo, who was present at the handover, remarked, “On behalf of the government and people of the Republic of Korea, I am extremely proud to be associated with this donation from the collective UNICEF effort to distribute masks all across the world and especially to Guyana, a country that has enjoyed extremely good relations with the Republic of Korea over many years. I know that this donation will make a huge difference to the lives of many children and frontline workers in Guyana. Let us as two nations continue to cooperate to better the lives of all of our peoples.”

Through UNICEF, the Government of the Republic of Korea is providing 4.6 million high-quality KF94 face masks to 24 countries in Africa and Latin America. KF stands for ‘Korean filter’ and 94 refers to the filtration efficiency, which means how good the mask is at filtering out particles, in this case, 94%.

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