Malls Warm the Hearts of Couriers Across China With...

Chinese shopping malls have come up with a novel way of rewarding workers who have kept to their outdoor posts during the novel coronavirus outbreak: free drinks and snacks.

"Unmanned" freezers have propped up in cities including Shanghai and Shenzhen offering free drinks, snacks and lunches donated by nearby eateries, supermarkets and public-spirited citizens.

"Thank you for your hard work! We will win the battle against the epidemic!" read a message board beside one freezer that invites couriers, sanitation workers, police officers and volunteers to its full inventory of beverages in south China's megacity of Shenzhen in Guangdong province.

Hundreds of millions of Chinese have followed instructions to stay indoors in the past month to minimize infection risks, leading to a surging workload for couriers delivering daily necessities and take-outs. Others needing to work outdoor, including street sweepers, have been praised for taking greater risks to maintain cities' operation.

"We wish to express our gratitude towards these hard-working people," said Li Wenkai, a spokesperson for COCO Park, a shopping mall in Shenzhen's Futian District that has followed suit with its own unmanned freezer outside its gate.

Similar freezers, accompanied by message boards of thankful notes, have also been spotted outside another emporium in Shenzhen and several office buildings in east China's Shanghai.

Li said the mall and its nine shops donated RMB 10,000 worth of drinks and snacks in late February as the first batch of goods to fill the freezer, whose supplies have been supported by public donations since then.

"I brought my daughter along to help donate goods, which I hope will make her feel more connected to the city," said a resident surnamed Huang, who was filling the freezer with 10 boxed meals.

Besides snacks and refreshments, the freezer also offers free masks to sanitation workers, which have been in tight supply since the outbreak.

Many couriers were surprised and touched by such acts of kindness. "It cools my throat but warms my heart," said a courier as he took a bottle of water from the freezer.

Source: xinhua/ Shenzhen daily

Editor: Crystal H



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