COVID-19 in Sancti Spiritus: People Isolated, but Never Neglected

Residents of Sancti Spiritus feel grateful for the support received from local authorities amidst confinement to contain SARS-CoV-2 virus expansion

Delia Proenza

A woman hands over supplies to someone in a restricted area
In Sancti Spíritus, many people extend their hands to those who live in restricted areas. (Photo: Oscar Alfonso / Escambray).

As she tells the story, she gets very emotional. Over and over again, she refers to Plasencia, the president of the district defense council who, since last September 27 when the area was fenced, has been constantly taking care of everything. And she also mentions Meibis, Maritza, Maipú and Alma, the four messengers in charge of the distribution of supplies to the people living in the neighbourhood.

According to Hanoi Guillot Pérez, a university professor, nobody is allowed to leave the restricted sector for ten days now, and it’s only the medical personnel and very few other people who can enter the 60-family block area. “Suddenly we were living the same experience we had seen many times on television and in the newspapers”, she said. But despite the restrictions, daily life keeps going on: “everything continues to be done, with the only difference that it is not you who does it”, she added.

Authorities watch over a restricted area in the city of Sancti Spiritus
More than 70 neighborhoods have been so far fenced in Sancti Spiritus.
(Photo: Vicente Brito / Escambray).

Similar opinions were expressed to Escambray by 63-year-old Julio Martínez Alba, who lives next to an elderly couple sick with the coronavirus. In this case the restricted area includes only five houses. Although missing work has been a difficult thing, Julio praises the excellent attention receive so far. Listening to the radio and watching television to be informed is almost all he does, apart from receiving telephone calls from friends and relatives who are concerned about him.

A feeling of gratitude to local authorities and the representatives of mass organizations in the community prevails among residents from the more than 70 neighborhoods where restrictive measures have been adopted to contain SARS-CoV-2 transmission in Sancti Spiritus.

In those areas delimited with ribbons people are talking about food products received, solidarity hands, human warmth, real concern, daily surveys and hope. In short, people are talking about a small and at the same time great country, which does not neglect anyone no matter how harsh the circumstances.

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