Italy and Spain remember their dead

As Italy and Spain remember the lives lost to coronavirus, communities are pulling together through acts of kindness.

On March 31, every life lost to COVID-19 in towns and cities across Italy was remembered as mayors stood in silence on the steps of their town halls.

More people have died of coronavirus in Italy than in any other country in the world.

“All the mayors have gathered together in a kind of ‘hug’,” said Antonio Decaro, the mayor of Bari, “most importantly near the places that are suffering the most, where the virus has been strongest, near the grief for people who have died. It is a sign of respect to their families and their small or big communities, we are giving a message of hope.”

In Spain, there was also a moment of silence and flags at half-mast for the thousands who have died.

Both countries have seen acts of kindness as people try to deliver messages of hope. 

On the streets of Naples in Italy, residents offer free food for whoever needs it. In Rome, Italian football club AS Roma is delivering care packages including essential supplies to its most vulnerable fans.

In Spain, an initiative delivers hundreds of free meals to front-line staff in Barcelona.

Medical staff in Spain are being pushed to their limits and face a real risk of infection, with more than 12,000 confirmed infections among healthcare workers to date, according to the El Pais newspaper.

“We are completely overwhelmed,” a nurse in Madrid said. “Health workers are exhausted, physically and emotionally because this is awful. This is an inferno.” 

This video was produced and edited by Al Jazeera NewsFeed’s Hassan Ghani.