‘I will not panic buy’

‘I will not panic buy’

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Local resident Cat Domican is committed to help out the community during the (COVID-19) coronavirus pandemic. Photograph — Aaron Van Rongen.

During this time of crisis one local resident wants to prove to the world that Australia knows how to help thy neighbour.

After being left horrified after seeing recent videos of people fighting over toilet paper and the elderly being left out, Cat Domican decided to call out those in the southern suburbs to join and help those in need.

“People are scared and panic buying is the one thing they can control,” she said.

“People are so much more exposed to social media and seeing what is happening in other countries it’s probably not helping with the panic mania.

“But I will not panic buy – my grandmother grew up during World War II and she told me about rationing, and we have nothing to worry about compared to those days.

“That is why the meaning of community is important to me, knowing who your neighbours are, offering a helping hand if they need one, respecting our elders and all the walks of life that we come from.”

For about six years Ms Domican has built an online connection with the community and her mission now is to fill the gap between those who are not online or linked up to the internet and giving them a way of reaching out to their local community as the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic rises.

“We will start by doing a mail drop in the local area, each street will have a “Street Champion” who will provide their contact name and telephone number so that any elderly or vulnerable person can get in contact and access our services,” she said.

“We will help with tasks such as shopping for food and essentials, collecting prescriptions or medication, postal services, doing research and finding information or just
having a friendly phone chat.

“If the demand grows, we might have to look at putting some processes in place, but for now I want to see what the response is like and then we can work from there.

“It is also available for people who are online too.”

For those active online Ms Domican has received a lot of interest and support of more than 100 people on her Helping Thy Neighbour – Willetton page.

People have already donated food and essentials for the elderly and people struggling and Ms Domican is already in the process of getting local businesses involved in the good cause.

“The more I realised that if we can try to prevent or ‘flatten the curve’ the more time and help we are giving the health care system and also potentially saving lives,” she said.

“I am hoping we will all be looking out for one another through this scary time and I am hoping that something beautiful will come of this nasty horrible virus, if anything… you will know your neighbour’s name.”

Everyone in the area will be receiving a note in the mail from one of the street champions within the coming weeks and any other surrounding suburbs that are struggling.

Anyone that wants to help out are encouraged to contact Ms Domican on 0466 447 672 or email helpthyneighbourwilletton@ gmail.com