The global pandemic has hit the tourism industry hard. Yet despite the havoc wreaked by COVID-19, resorts in Thailand, Vietnam and Bali are supporting their communities during this difficult period.
Melia Koh Samui’s team helps others doing it tough in the wake of pandemic
The staff at the new Melia Koh Samui, on Thailand’s second largest island, are fortunate to retain their jobs and 100 per cent of their salaries during the global COVID-19 pandemic. So much so, they banded together to donate money to fund 115 packs brimming with essentials such as rice, noodles, cooking oil, milk, tinned food and much more, for people in their local community in need. The resort’s staff put together the packs and distributed them to an array of different recipients, ranging from those who lost their jobs as a result of COVID-19 and families struggling with poverty, to people who are bedridden or living with disabilities, to students doing it tough.
Azerai Resorts donates essential supplies to local workers and health clinics
Few countries have navigated the coronavirus outbreak more successfully than Vietnam, but that doesn’t mean the situation has been without challenges. Azerai La Residence, Hue has stepped in to provide direct relief to local cyclo drivers who have been impacted by the steep drop in tourist arrivals to the city. The hotel has donated rice, cooking oil and instant noodles to more than 100 individuals, while also donating 2,500 facemasks, 1,300 bottles of mineral water, 70 liters of milk, and 600 cans of other beverages to provincial quarantine centers. Meanwhile, in the Mekong Delta, Azerai Can Tho continues to work closely with local hospitals and clinics, and has provided them with 4,000 N95 masks, 2,500 bars of organic soap, and 128 liters of hand sanitizer to help bolster their supplies.
The Anam’s resident yogi teaches yoga to children in need
When The Anam’s resident yogi Umesh visited the nearby Thanh Son Pagoda in Cam Lam and met a group of orphans, he wanted to do something to make a difference in their lives. From early July, in the wake of the pandemic, he has opted to teach 20 orphans yoga each Sunday for one hour from 7am at the pagoda to boost their health and happiness. “I was thinking about how I could use my free time to serve others, and decided to share my skills and knowledge with the children,” Umesh said. “Their happiness makes me happy too.” The Anam’s staff recently visited the pagoda with Umesh to donate yoga matts for the budding yoga students’ use. Umesh has been The Anam’s resident yogi since the resort’s grand opening in 2017 on Cam Ranh peninsula, teaching sunrise and sunset yoga to guests as well as holding private yoga classes.
Switching from farm-to-table to farm-to-staff-table during Covid-19
The team at the Bali property, Tanah Gajah, a Resort by Hadiprana, has always placed high importance on farm-to-table (most of the produce served is grown on the grounds and interactive dining/cooking experiences play a big part in their offering). With Covid-19 they’ve now switched to a farm-to-staff-table approach. They’ve started a new nursery, to supplement the main garden, planting fast growing herbs and vegetables (shallots, onions, garlic, chili, turnips, morning glory, etc) in order to support the food needs of their staff. They are also giving out the Tilapia fish, which they have in their ponds, to their 126 staff and are focused on keeping the flow of fish to the team members sustainable. As most of the resort staff reside in the nearby village it’s helping to feed the local community too.
Banyan Tree’s gift from the heart
Few gestures can be considered more altruistic than a blood donation – quite literally giving part of yourself to someone in need. And so up stepped Remko Kroesen, the general manager at Banyan Tree Samui in Thailand, who led by example on 19th March when he welcomed a mobile clinic to the 5-star resort. Staff lined up – some gingerly at first – and some 8,400cc of blood was collected by the blood bank which coordinates medical aid among Koh Samui and its neighboring islands. “We’re always ready to help the local community in whatever ways we can,” said Kroesen. “Perhaps today’s blood drive will ultimately save lives, so I’m very proud of our staff.”