Prague, Nov 9 (efe-epa).- For just over a year, Czech student Jan Faltus has taken it upon himself to clean up Prague’s city center by disposing of litter and scrubbing graffiti but now, armed with a bottle of disinfectant, he has set his sights on Covid-19.
The Czech Republic weathered Europe’s first wave of coronavirus relatively well compared to the likes of Spain and Italy, but a second wave of Covid-19 has sunk its teeth into the nation, which now has one of the highest infection rates in the European Union.
“I am not a doctor or a medic but I will help thanks to my initiative,” Faltus told epa-efe.
Faltus started his Better City (Lepsi Mesto) project in October last year and his exploits attracted an ever-growing list of followers on social media and inspired others to get involved in street cleaning, too.
He said he felt compelled to help tackle the coronavirus when the number of infections began to jump by around 15,000 a day in the Czech Republic.
“I could not just sit at home,’ he said. “I bought disinfectant and went to clean the busy places — places that hundreds of people touch every day,” he added.
Today, Faltus can be spotted around the city cleaning escalator handrails, park benches and the buttons on pedestrian crossings and parking meters.
He is able to fund his project, which he does in his spare time, thanks to donations from his online followers.
Faltus had already earned plaudits on social media pre-pandemic with his before and after photographs on Instagram, which showed staircases cleaned of stickers, bridges freed of padlocks and garage doors scrubbed of tags.
As an art history student, Faltus said he has a “certain love” for the city center of Prague, which has been included on UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites.
Czech health authorities reported 3,608 new Covid-19 infections in the last 24 hours on Monday, 3,000 fewer than last week’s daily average. The downward trend comes after authorities imposed a lockdown in late October in a bid to curb the surge in cases. EFE-EPA