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Life as a nurse on the frontline of the pandemic in hard-hit Brazil

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With Brazil reporting the world's second-highest number of coronavirus cases and deaths, a Brazilian nurse and Compassion graduate, Edilson Rodrigues de Araújo Júnior, shares what daily life looks like and the new challenges for health professionals treating COVID-19 during the quarantine.

My name is Edilson and I'm 25 years old. I started attending the Compassion programme when I was seven years old and it was there that I lived most of my life. When I graduated from the project at 17, I knew that I would take the fundamental principles I learned there into my future life. I learned about God and the meaning of the word empathy; the need to put yourself in another's place.

Today, I work as a nurse at a hospital where most of the time I support the operating room, but I also work in other sectors depending on the hospital's needs. When we started to receive the first suspected cases of COVID-19, we were very frightened by all we heard in the news about the fast spread of the virus in the world. 

Since then, our entire routine at the hospital has changed. We began to receive special Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and training to deal with the challenges of the pandemic. The hospital received several isolation beds for the patients

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The work environment has been extremely tense and agitated, as the number of cases continues to grow. I've been working as a nurse for two years and I am increasingly proud of my profession. We have been working harder than ever on the front lines of this war, risking our lives every day.

Our whole routine has changed inside and outside the hospital, which has been difficult. People need to be informed of the care they must take during this time so, in addition to working at the hospital, I also support the Compassion programme that I used to attend by providing COVID-19 information and training for volunteers.

In the tensest moments, I pray that God will give us discernment in the face of challenges and that we will never lack the faith to continue fighting this virus every day. I believe that only in God will we find the solution to our afflictions.

Compassion UK is encouraging supporters and the public to donate to the COVID-19 Emergency Appeal which will enable our church partners to provide children, families and wider communities with health and stability through hygiene, food and housing security. To find out more go to www.compassionuk.org/covid
 

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