The COVID-19 lockdown has been difficult for most, and absolutely devastating for others. We all saw photos and videos of migrant workers leaving cities to return home, often walking on foot for hundreds of kilometres to get to a place where they would have access to food and water - all this, with the dangers of becoming carriers of the virus. For migrant labourers in Sikar, Rajasthan, the quarantine period became a way for them to contribute, and they took to helping paint a school.
The migrant labourers, mostly from Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar, were apparently so overwhelmed with the support and services provided to them by villagers on arrival that they wanted to do something in return, and started painting the school building they were being housed in. On request, the sarpanch and villagers arranged paint for them.
According to reports, the school had not been painted for the last nine years, and the migrant labourers did it simply to offer gratitude for the hospitality.
Perhaps we can all learn a thing or two from these resilient hearts, who turned a moment of adversity into one of gratitude. Stripped off their lives and homes, these migrant workers continued to make the most of their time and helping those who helped them. While the coronavirus situation is unlike any other we have faced in recent times, it is important to not force oneself to be productive, however, we must try and help those around us who may not have anyone else to look out for them.