At midday on on Saturday, Italians across the country came to their windows and balconies to give a collective round of applause to the various doctors, nurses, and medical staff who are working round the clock to tackle to growing Coronavirus crisis.
It comes after Friday night’s musical flash mob, that saw people playing instruments out their windows and engaging in singalongs with neighbours, in a bid to swap fear for fun. Videos of the scenes quickly spread across social media accompanied by uplifting messages of hope.
Following the flash mob’s success, Italians came to their windows again on Saturday to fill the deserted streets with an applause to thank health workers for their tireless efforts so far.
Messages circulated on Whatsapp prior to the event, with organisers stating, “Everyone at their windows for a long applause of thanks to all those who are working for us in the hospitals and an encouragement to us. A simple gesture to unite our hands.”
Videos were shared on Twitter of clapping ringing out in the streets and throughout neighbourhoods from Rome to Milan.
— Roberto Casassa (@CasassaRoberto) March 14, 2020
The Italian care system is under extreme pressure at the moment, particularly in the hardest hit areas of Lombardy. Medical staff have spoken of beds being made up in corridors, of mask shortages, and of exhausted staff sleeping at their desks. One nurse said, “It’s an experience I would compare to a world war.”