Former students of the University of St Andrews in China have donated 11,000 face masks to protect Scottish health workers fighting the Covid-19 pandemic.
The generous donation comes in response to a message of support which was sent from the university to Chinese colleagues when the virus first struck in Wuhan in January.
In mid-March as the coronavirus situation in China started to ease, the act of kindness was reciprocated when St Andrews alumni in China donated money to buy equipment to fight the pandemic in Scotland, the country they called home while at university.
St Andrews graduate Du Peng, Director International Cooperation at HIT Robot Group, said: “We are all aware of the recent situation, coronavirus is spreading quickly in the UK and EU.
“As a Chinese citizen I have been through the recent nationwide 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 includes face masks, testing kits, infrared thermography equipment and expert advice from former students who fought Covid-19 in China.
An initial shipment of 11,000 face masks from the HIT Robot Group arrived at the University Medical School this week.
Around 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.
St Andrews principal, Professor Sally Mapstone, said: “We are so very grateful that our alumni from China are thinking of our students and staff in St Andrews, and we very much appreciate their generosity and support in this challenging time.
“St Andrews is a global community and the solidarity and concern shown by our family in China for the place that was once their home is truly touching.”