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Catholics in Vietnam distribute food to most affected by pandemic

Catholic groups in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam have mobilized volunteers to prepare and distribute food to people most affected by the pandemic — including street vendors and street sweepers.

The city has seen a spike in COVID-19 cases, including at a factory, a residential building, hospitals and a religious mission, in recent days.

The city has logged a total of 845 infections since late April, making it the third-biggest coronavirus hotspot during the current outbreak, official data showed.

Redemptorist priest Joseph Lê Quang Uy thanked volunteers for holding “charitable activities” for those most affected by the pandemic.

“There are those who support us financially, those who donate water and food,” said the priest, adding that the volunteers were able to serve up to 300 people.

A volunteer told AsiaNews that Catholics have always been helping people living in difficult conditions “by trying to get everyone free meals and thoughtful care.”

“In the last two weeks, however, there have been many cases of COVID-19 and this has generated great concern,” said the volunteer.

Father Lê Quang Uy said those who suffer most from the health crisis are the poor, the elderly, the workers, and street people.

“These people are suffering the greatest losses due to the pandemic,” said the priest.

Vietnam’s Catholic Church leaders have earlier donated money to a state fund to accelerate vaccine procurement for the country.

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Vietnam donated US$130,434 to the national COVID-19 vaccine fund, which was launched by Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh on June 5.

The fund, which needs to secure US$1.2 billion to acquire 150 million vaccine doses for 75 million people out of the total population of 98 million, had received US$45 million from domestic businesses and benefactors. – with a report from AsiaNews

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