Since the beginning of the outbreak of Covid-19, we have been preparing our contingency plan for the worst case scenarios in case UK is not exempt from the global pandemic.
While we started to search for surgical masks in early February 2020. We noticed many mask manufacturers for major retailers do not conduct lab tests before procurement on requirements such as VPE and BPE. However, their prices are much higher than what general public can get in East Asia regardless of insufficient supply across the globe.
This has triggered us to learn about other areas affecting our Chinese community and as foreseen, racial discrimination was on the rise. On the same week, SCP initiated to write two letters in hope of collaborating closer with relevant Scottish public agencies, one to Chief Police Constable on suspect rise in hate crime, another one to Chief Medical Officer on public health advice. As a result, we have heard back from Scottish Government's Covid-19 Response Team and Police Scotland's Safer Communities Team with positive feedback including our later establishment of the first national third party reporting centre.
With all efforts before the situation began to worsen in March 2020, SCP has identified 9 areas that we believe are most concerned by our professional community and their families. In order to manage the problems given rise by those 9 areas, we have call on a team of 15 to set up the Combat Covid-19 Project in mid-February with 18 subprojects that range from community outreaching to retiree support, from bilingual interpretation to tradition Chinese medical clinic. Credits must go to our NEC especially the team leaders who were leading and training our 8 hard working YCP student committee members that are undergoing our first structured ambassador programme this year.
Since last year, we had big plans for 2020 especially our YCP Achievement Award was due for this year. We were also planning for the 10th anniversary of YCP in 2 months time. Although these plans are all adjusting themselves, we are refocusing all our efforts on safeguarding our wider and Chinese community. We believe this is the right thing to do and will continue to do so until the pandemic calms down.
Someone has asked us what we actually do. While we send out our newsletters from time to time, we do a lot of background work without claiming our credits. But often it is time like this our contribution becomes more obvious because we want people to know we stand by them when they really need our help. Things that only we can do when people come to us, there is no reason not to try our best to help, just like one of our NEC members who saved an 80 year old's life by doing the food delivery that some others may think so trivial.
Nothing can be taken for granted at the moment, not even going to toilet. But what we can make good use of this time is to remind ourselves how important it is to support each other and treasure lives that many out there are risking theirs to save.