Former St Andrews students donate 11,000 face masks

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Former students of the University of St Andrews in China have donated 11,000 face masks to the university to protect Scottish health workers fighting the COVID-19 crisis.

When coronavirus struck the city of Wuhan in the first days of the New Year, colleagues at St Andrews reached out to Chinese friends and alumni with a simple message of concern and support.

In mid-March, as the coronavirus situation in China started to ease, that act of simple kindness was reciprocated when St Andrews alumni across China donated money to buy equipment to fight the pandemic in Scotland, the country they called home while at university.

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St Andrews graduate Du Peng, director international cooperation at HIT Robot Group, said: “We are all aware of the recent situation, the coronavirus is spreading quickly in the UK and EU. As a Chinese (citizen) I have been through the recent national wide quarantine in China, and as a member of St Andrews alumni, I care about the students and staff at the university.

“St Andrews China Alumni proposed to all alumni around China to help our university, our town, to get through this tough time.”

The offer of help from St Andrews alumni in China includes face masks, testing kits, infrared thermography equipment and expert advice from former students who fought COVID-19 in China.

Some 4500 masks have gone to NHS Fife; 4500 to NHS Tayside; and 1000 to the Fife Council Health and Social Care Carers’ network. The university has held 1000 masks for staff engaged in research and support work.