The Mayor of the City and County of Limerick Cllr Michael Sheahan has thanked the City of Hangzhou in China for its generous gift of 10,000 PPE face masks as the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic continues.
The consignment has been delivered to Council Headquarters in Merchant’s Quay, Limerick in recognition of the growing economic, cultural and education links between the two cities and regions.
Limerick and Hangzhou first began exploring links in early 2018 in conjunction with the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs, the Chinese Embassy in Ireland, and the Department of Foreign Affairs in the Hangzhou Municipal Government. The Irish Chinese community were involved in the relationship from the start.
In December 2018, a formal signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the City of Hangzhou, China and Limerick City and County Council took place to explore areas of co-operation and collaboration between Limerick and Hangzhou in economy, trade, tourism, education, and culture sectors.
The links were further explored and deepened in September 2019, when Mayor Sheahan was invited to represent Limerick at the Hangzhou International Sisters Cities Conference and to present a paper on Limerick’s experience of the digital economy at the 2019 Hangzhou International Sister Cities Mayors’ Conference.
Welcoming the generous donation the Mayor of the City and County of Limerick, Cllr Michael Sheahan said: “I am delighted to be receiving this most generous of gifts from one of our sister cities, Hangzhou. The Chinese know better than most the impact Covid-19 Coronavirus is having on its society, and this gesture is a sign of the solidarity between Limerick and Hangzhou as we battle this virus.”
“At a time when there is incredibly high demand for PPE gear for our frontline healthcare workers, the arrival of this generous gift is most opportune. It highlights the importance of Limerick seeking out new links around the world and of developing and nurturing the ones we have already so that there can be mutual benefits to both regions.”
“I would personally like thank the leaders of Hangzhou for this consignment and I’m proud to be able to accept these PPE face masks on behalf of the people of Limerick.”
The consignment has now been handed over to staff at University Hospital Limerick who will distribute them to those on the frontline.
Accepting the consignment of PPE face masks John Doyle, Head of Services, Scheduled Care, UL Hospitals Group, said: “This is a virus that does not recognise borders and it is heartening to see international co-operation such as that between Limerick and Hangzhou. We are grateful to the Council and to our friends in China and this donation will help us protect patients and staff and reduce transmission of Covid-19.”
The Mayor also thanked the people of Limerick for the courage, determination and selflessness they have shown over the past two months or so as we all deal with the ongoing restrictions to daily life imposed to protect our public health.
Mayor Sheahan said: “There is a resoluteness in the character of the Limerick people that shows that we can battle against adversity while keeping our spirits up. This resolve is shining through as we life with the restrictions set down by government which have become part and parcel of daily life.”
“I know it can be very frustrating having to abide by all these rules, but I urge everyone to continue to follow them. The government’s roadmap for re-opening society and business will return us to some semblance of normality.”
“I would like to pay tribute to all those who are working on the frontline in health care and also all the other workers who are deemed essential and who are continuing to provide services to the people of Limerick, and of course the volunteers who have answered the call and a working to support all those in the community as part of the Limerick Covid-19 Community Response or other volunteer groupings.”