#BeThere for Masked Heroes

Care workers are simultaneously the heroes and the victims of the effects of the pandemic. The importance of supporting them not only impacts their own well-being, and the help that they are able and willing to provide, but the trajectory of the pandemic itself.

True appreciation is not only recognising someone’s efforts and contribution. It also involves showing respect and understanding, as well as gratitude. Community Care Workers (CCW) who are putting themselves in the path of the virus include:

  • 50 000 Community healthcare workers
  • 30 000 Social workers and 19,400 social work students
  • 16 500 Social auxiliary workers and 12,000 social auxiliary worker students
  • 9000 Child and youth care workers

The risks and sacrifices are real

Good Idea

Here are ideas for things you can do as an individual, family, group of friends or community to show the CCWs in your life that you care.


The most important thing you can do: Protect yourself from Covid-19 infection so that the health system don’t get overwhelmed which will increase the risk of CCWs. Stay at home as much as possible; wear a mask correctly when you leave your house; practice social distancing and wash our hands regularly and thoroughly. To ensure that CCWS don’t need to deal with other serious and avoidable diseases resurfacing, remember to immunise your children.


  • Cook them a healthy meal so that they don’t need to still do that after a full day in the field. Or drop-off groceries, essentials, and supplies to their house.
  • Drop off some books and/or toys for their children. Or offer to do some work in their garden if they have one, or offer to fix things around the house (outside) – they might not have time.
  • Make a “You are essential” or “You are my hero”; or “I am so proud of you” gift pack to spoil them. Include anything to pamper them, for example, chocolate; coffee or special tea that they like; bubble bath, a nice magazine etc. Spoil them if you can, but if you can’t, remember that a simple note saying "I value you" can turn a person’s day around.
  • Start a WhatsApp/Moya support group

  • Celebrate them on social media (with their permission). Share what you admire about them and a specific example of something they did for you and how it made a difference.Please remember to add the tag #MaskedHeroesSA so that we can find your post and also feature them.
    Create & share a thank you card
  • Organise an appreciation drive in your community – record a song; make some streetart, do some clapping and singing in the evening. Remember to share what you are doing on social media and to add the #MaskedHeroesSA tag! 

Support for non-profit organisations that are supporting CCWs  (Connectors)

  • Ask them what support they need and write a post for social media to mobilise others to support them (tag a local newspaper).  
  • Offer your skills (finance, marketing, customer service, etc.) to help them run more efficiently.
  • Click here to see a list of organisations who are supporting CCWs as part of the Covid response.

Thank you for your bravery and courage!