In Italy, Coronavirus good samaritans deliver food parcels, Easter cheer


Palagano (Italy) (AFP)

Bread, vegetables, medicines, even Easter lamb -- in remote areas of Italy, food and essential supplies are being delivered to villagers in need during the coronavirus crisis.

In the northern village of Palagano, nestled in the Appenine mountains an hour's drive from Modena, some of the 2,000 residents have come to rely on others for help in challenging times.

Onelio, 85, who is recovering from a broken rib, receives regular visits from Laura and Sara, two volunteers from local association Avap.

The volunteers -- fitted out head to toe in protective gear -- not only check on Onelio's health, but deliver supplies and help with light housework. Of course, there is always enough time for a chat too.

Mayor Fabio Braglia, who has organised the home visits by Avap, has also found volunteers to prepare envelopes stuffed with protective masks, which are later delivered to each Palagano resident by local police.

Village businesses are also getting involved.

Baker Sara brings Easter bread and pastries to the Carmelite nuns who run the House of Charity in the town of Vitriola, about 15 kilometres (nine miles) from Palagano.

Other nuns from the Franciscan convent in the heart of Palagano receive boxes overflowing with vegetables from the small supermarket in town.

Michele Ferrari, the store's manager, makes sure that those who can't venture forth much are at the top of his list for deliveries of basic necessities, whether fresh produce, meat or even the newspaper.

Because of the Easter weekend, the village butcher, Olimpio, has also prepared trays of lamb with Palagano's young people doing the deliveries.