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Making COVID history

Human beings have already scored some amazing victories along the road to squashing this bug. Alastair tells Clarisse why he reckons we need to win 7 matches to lift the “World Cup” against COVID-19

HELLO and welcome to WoW!, the positive podcast, listening to kids and showing them that there’s a lot more to our world than bad news.

I’m Alastair. As a journalist, I spent many years bringing people bad news from all over the world. Now I realise that if we’re really going to fix our problems, we need a bit of hope and inspiration too. And so I get together with my podcast buddy Clarisse to talk about what people are already doing to come up with solutions.

Right now, our big problem is corona virus. Clarisse and I are keeping you up to date with the good news. So if you want to cheer up a friend, do send them a link to this, WoW! News, the positive podcast.

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C – Hi Alastair. So you’ve got good news on the corona virus for us?

A – Hi Clarisse, yes. I’ve worked out that we’re already a long way down the track to getting rid of this nuisance.

C – Really? How do you work that out, Alastair?

A – Well, to me, beating corona virus is a bit like the World Cup : to knock out the competition and lift the trophy you basically need to win seven matches.

C – Ah yes! Like France in 2018!

A – Weeell, yes Clarisse. I guess. Not everyone’s French like you! But yes, when we beat COVID it will be like the human race is all on the French team at the World Cup two years ago. Now you mention it, it’s as well we’re not like my team, Scotland… In fact we humans are absolutely guaranteed to win this tournament – so much more like France!

C – Ha. Mais bien sûr! In that case of course, we’ll win! Allez les Bleus!

A – Yup. You said it, Clarisse. We’re already pretty much already in the World Cup final against corona virus. So sit back and let me run down how many games we’ve already won against COVID-19.

C – OK! I’m taking notes!

A – So back in November, corona virus opening the scoring by making people ill in China. At most times in history, that would have been really bad news for humans. Our ancestors had no idea of what a virus was or how it made us sick. But no more. In just a few weeks, Chinese doctors had zoomed in on COVID, taken its picture with microscopes and even worked out its genes. They had COVID fingerprints and they shared them with the world. So that was Round 1 of Humans versus COVID and we absolutely smashed it. We know a huge amount about this bug, and that gave us a flying start on the way to beating it.

C – Great! Round one to us! Woo hoo!

A – Absolutely. But it gets better. Round two. How to spot the bug. Almost as soon as we knew what it looked like, doctors in several countries had devised tests so we can identify which of us actually has the bug and so needs to stay in isolation. So it’s already Humans 2, Bugs nil.

Round 3. The virus started spreading round the world. But we’ve kept one step ahead – by spreading ourselves out. Billions of us are staying comfortably at home, keeping our distance and keeping safe. It’s not much fun, but it’s three wins out of three for us humans so far.

C – OK. Alastair. And what about washing our hands?

A – Yes, thanks for mentioning it Clarisse. That’s another human invention that keeps the bugs at bay. We’ve all been washing our hands like mad and the bugs don’t like it. Corona virus can’t stand soap and water. So we’ve cruised to victory in our fourth round match.

As we get further on in the World Cup, of course, the competition gets tougher.

Round 5, we’re into the quarter-finals, and it involves people pushing back against the virus once they’ve got sick.

Most people don’t get very ill. And by the way, kids almost never get sick with COVID. But some people do get really bad with the virus and they can especially have trouble breathing. That’s when they need to go to hospital and they need help breathing from machines called ventilators. In some places we may not have enough ventilators just at the moment. But very quickly we’ve seen engineers and doctors coming up with all sorts of clever solutions, to make simple ventilators in factories that normally make vacuum cleaners for example. So it’s been a tough fight, but I’d say we’ve just won round five.

C – OK. That’s good to know, Alastair but what more do we need?

A – Well Clarisse, where we are right now I’d say is near the end of round six, a kind of semifinal in this COVID World Cup. Because what doctors are looking for now is some drugs that we already have in the cupboard that can help people who are sick to fight off the virus. Right now there are tests going on of a least four drugs which we have in quite large amounts and that seem to help. I feel the match in round six is maybe a draw between humans and bugs right now – but that we are about to score the winning goal, by confirming that we have drugs to fight back.

C – That’s fantastic, Alastair. So we’ve nearly won the World Cup?

A – You bet. For me, the big final game against corona virus will end with us humans finding a vaccine that will protect us all in the future from catching COVID.

C – And when will that happen?

A – Well, pretty soon. I reckon. Thousands of scientists around the world are already working hard on different types of vaccine. There could be breakthroughs as soon as in the next few weeks. Now, there’s a word of caution here: once they do work out a vaccine – that’s a drug that we all get to make sure we don’t catch a disease – it will take quite a few months to test it to see that it’s safe. After all, we might be giving it to billions of people, so we have to be sure it doesn’t hurt any of them.

C – And you’re sure that we’ll find a vaccine?

A – Well, don’t take my word for it. The scientific experts all reckon it’s just a matter of time. Winning the vaccine game, that will mean humans seventh victory in seven on the way to lifting the COVID World Cup.

C – Yaaay! Like France!

A – Yes, Clarisse like France! And maybe Scotland. One day… Anyway, I think that we’ve won five or six, let’s say 5 and a half, out of seven rounds of this World Cup contest against COVID. And we can be very confident of putting the virus out of the game altogether.

C – Thanks Alastair. That makes me feel better. And do you know? I have another plan to make our listeners feel better too?

A – Really? What’s that Clarisse?

C – Well, I’ve made up a magic recipe of things that cheer me up and I’d like our listeners to make their own. Ready? So, you draw a big pot on a sheet of paper. Then you can write words inside the pot, or draw things or stick on pictures cut from magazines – all the things that make you happy. You can even make words up !

A – Hm. I’m not sure I would know where to start…

C – Well let me give you an example. Here’s the recipe in my pot – lots of fruit, some chunks of chocolate, er a bar of soap, a touch of mint and what I call luminovitamina. Sprinkle in some music and and a pinch of smile et voila !

A – That sounds brilliant Clarisse. I’ll let you go and enjoy it.

Now, I hope you all got the idea out there. Send us your pictures or your recipes. You can reach us at mywowtime on Facebook or Instagram or contact us at our website www dot wow dash news dot eu. We’ve had the builders in so our site’s looking very fresh – but do excuse a bit of mess still.

Thank you all for listening. We’ll be back in a few days with more updates from WoW! News, the positive podcast. Don’t forget to check out our website for more stories at www dot wow dash news dot eu – and help us cheer up kids around the world by passing on this podcast to a friend!

Till next time, stay safe and keep positive!

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