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Thursday , 18 August 2022

Filipinos in Melbourne share their experiences returning to lockdown

Filipinos living in Melbourne's hotspot suburbs share their views of going back into lockdown.

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Jason Cordi
Jason Cordi
Editor-in-Chief, The Philippine Times

Metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire have returned to Stage 3 Stay at Home restrictions as a result of an increasing number COVID-19 infections.

The Philippine Times reached out to five Filipino-Australians living in hotspot suburbs: Keilor Downs, Maribyrnong, St Albans, Roxburgh Park and Craigieburn, to find out how they feel about returning to lockdown for the second time.

Liz Honey, community radio broadcaster, Keilor Downs

I take these decisions in a positive way. At least our area will be looked after and most people will be tested. All of us in our household did the test and all negative. We went to Keilor Community Hub. We didn’t have the symptoms but went for peace of mind while it’s available for everyone to be tested – we took that opportunity. And I’m glad we did.

It is sad because we got used to going away to the bush or a country area on the weekends.
We are used to working from home for many years and so that part hasn’t changed for us.
Our garden is in the best shape ever, and we are watching more shows, concerts and movies as a family.

Overall, this pandemic affected how we think, our values and how we relate or react to others. And we save money and have more quality time with our family. I managed to get my family to agree to share the cooking every day! However, I do miss travel, my radio program, events, and our weekly dance class. I miss visiting and taking my mum out.

Pin Rutaquio, business owner, Maribyrnong

I agree with the lockdown because it will/should help contain Covid in our community. In my area around Highpoint and Maribyrnong, I have noticed a whole lot more police (on horses). There were less people on the roads and there are government volunteers door knocking for COVID tests. I have recently been tested and got the result after two days that I am negative.

I am coping well in key life aspects. Personally, it’s affecting social time, plans we have set for my daughter’s 13th birthday, and other school holiday plans. As a business owner, I need to keep my positivity in these times to ensure support to everyone in my inner circle. In business, it not affecting us yet but we need to take extra measures to protect our employees and customers.

The whole pandemic has pivoted me personally. The previous lockdown has geared me up for this second round.

Roy Carbungco, business owner, Roxburgh Park

If this is the way to control COVID-19, I don’t mind the lockdown.

We were able to cope with the previous lockdown so I don’t see any reason why we cannot cope with the same restrictions, although it will affect our daily lives. However, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

I will keep myself busy at home doing all my house repairs and renovation projects. I will only go out for necessities and to avoid visitors as much as possible. I always wear masks and keep distancing from crowds.

Paula Victorio, stay at home mum, St Albans

We’re a bit disappointed and frustrated because we can’t start new plans, goals for the future like work, business and most of all Lynda’s baptism and 1st birthday.

I agree with the lockdown because we all will benefit.

Since day one of COVID here in Melbourne, I started to read, watch news etc. but through my faith and prayers, God answered all my worries and questions.

In PROVERBS 3:5-6 says trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways submit to Him and will make your paths straight.

Our daily life is still the same. Thankful that Ariel (my husband) has his work with overtime, though no clients since March until now but through our faith and being faithful to God, we are sustained. God has a big purpose and reason for this Covid and it’s an awakening for every one believers and for non-believers.

Marieann Tigas, supermarket worker, Craigieburn

Not much has changed between the easing of restrictions and the lockdown of suburbs, we as a family have always practiced social distancing. When there was a positive case in one of the schools here, that’s what brought the point even closer to home. I’ve got two children and it’s a worry for sure.

Lockdown is for the protection of the community and each other. It’s better to have the entire community on lockdown.

We cope by looking at the positives, spending more time with family. Bonding with them. Making sure that we are still productive. Sticking only to the four reasons why we should go out. As both my husband and myself are essential workers, the going to work part still happens.

Jason Cordi
Jason Cordi
Editor-in-Chief, The Philippine Times

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