KUCHING: Most parents are stuck at home during the movement control order (MCO) period.
Apart from having plenty of time with their children and grandchildren, it is also a golden time for parents and grandparents to assist the children with their school works.
What do grandmothers do at home during the MCO and Covid-19 pandemic?
New Sarawak Tribune interviewed several grandparents living in rural villages to find out, and most of the answers they gave were babysitting and doing routine works like cooking, washing clothes and general cleaning.
The more educated grandparents would go the extra mile by helping their grandchildren with their school works.
Retired school teacher Rubim Raki, 61, is one of those educated grandmother of nine who spent her MCO period assisting the little ones with their school works.
She also helped her husband with some gardening behind their house.
Rubim and her husband, who is also a retired school teacher, have nine grandchildren ― two of which, aged three and seven, are staying with them.
“They stayed with me as they wanted me and my husband to help them with their school works,” she said.
Another grandmother from Padawan, Hordis @ Smuk Oscar, 56, said it has been a fruitful time spent with her two grandchildren.
“I take care of them as both their parents are working.
“My daily routine consists of cooking, washing clothes and cleaning the house. After that, I will have time for them ― teaching them to read and write,” said Hordis.
Hordis also does some gardening at her backyard ― planting some vegetables for own consumption.
A grandmother of two, Kerin Sarus, 55, took her off from work as a stall operator at the Stutong Community Market here to take care of her grandchildren while their mother is at work.
Kerin said that she has to take care of her grandchildren ― a two-year-old boy and a four-month-old girl ― as her daughter Elfa, a nurse at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of Sarawak General Hospital (SGH), is not able to return home after work as she is not allowed to do so.
She said her daughter and her colleagues were placed at a hotel as long as they are serving Covid-19 patients at the ICU red zone.
“My daughter and family members are still traumatised with what my daughter has experienced in the past one month when she has to undergo a two-week quarantine at a specified centre in Santubong after one of her colleagues, who happened to stay in the same room with her at a hotel here, was found to be Covid-19positive.
“Praise the Lord, she was tested negative twice and was allowed to return home. But today (yesterday), she is back at work. “We can only pray for her safety and ask the Almighty God to protect her,” added Kerin.