For the past few weeks, stands offering free food have appeared in the streets in the Philippines, where more and more families are unable to join both ends because of the restrictions against the pandemic, devastating for the economy.
Juliet Reyes, street sweeper, regularly provides fruit and vegetables with one of these solidarity stands, numerous in Manila, supplied by volunteers.
The latest confinement imposed in March in the capital, the real economic lung of the archipelago, led to the loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs and many of its 24 million inhabitants have no income.
"I am very grateful to them. It is immense help for us who are in the greatest precariousness," says Reyes, 41, who struggles to feed a family of eight people with her meager salary of 200 pesos (3,40 euros) per day.
Patricia no, 26, is at the origin of this spontaneous national initiative.A few weeks ago, she parked at the corner of a very frequented Manila street a cart filled with rice, pasta, canned and vegetables gleaned in her kitchen.
"Give what you can, take what you need," offered passers -by a hand -written cardboard panel.
The cart has emptied in a few hours and Patricia no launched on Facebook a call for donations, which has become viral.
Very quickly, the contributions flocked and the beneficiaries became thousands.Every day, they line up, upon lifting the curfew at 5 am.
"Many are in need and I have more than insult for me at home," Patricia no, who now centralizes foods of food intended for other stands.
- "a palliative measure" -
"It is not a solution to hunger and poverty. But it is a palliative measure," said the young woman.
His charitable gesture inspired other people, including police, churches or coast guard, who began to install their own stands offering food throughout the archipelago.
On social networks, photos show tables full of donations, with people, the face covered with a mask and equipped with provision bags, which line up.Some stands also offer free pet food.
These solidarity actions fuel criticism on the shortcomings of government policy towards the most precarious while the confinements have undergone the economy and millions of people suffer from hunger.
During the last containment of Manila and its region started at the end of March, the government offered aid of 1,000 pesos per person or 4,000 pesos (69 euros) per family.Until now, barely two -thirds of this aid have been distributed.
President Rodrigo Duterte's spokesperson Harry Roque praised food stands as reflecting "the best of the Philippins in the worst moments".
But a spokesperson for the force of fighting the Communists, set up by the president, accused the volunteers of being sympathizers of the rebels and of doing "the work of the devil".
Patricia not points to the limits of government action and thinks that "the concept of solidarity stands would not be so successful if there were no needs".