Scientology Volunteer Ministers are Helping Hollywood Stay Well
After more than two months of hunkering down inside, L.A. County is starting to reopen. How fast we return to normal is in our own hands.
As Los Angeles begins to reopen, Scientology Volunteer Ministers (VMs) are helping local residents by distributing copies of booklets that provide the basic information on how to keep yourself and others well.
Los Angeles has been hit harder by COVID-19 than any other county in California and is among the worst counties in the country for reported cases. What’s more, there were more new cases reported at the start of Memorial Day Weekend than any previous single day. So while Angelenos are more than ready to get going again, it is vital for everyone to understand what they can do to prevent the spread of this or any virus.
A team of Volunteer Ministers visited local businesses and residences in the Hollywood district around the famous intersection of Hollywood and Vine to offer them sets of three booklets: How to Keep Yourself and Others Well, How to Protect Yourself and Others with a Mask and Gloves and How to Prevent the Spread of Illness with Isolation. Booklets are packaged in custom-designed boxes that, when opened, can be folded into a counter-top display inviting people to “please take one.” Booklets and display boxes are available in English, Spanish and 18 additional languages, including Gaelic and Zulu.
Jessica, a Volunteer Minister, who has lived in the area for years, wanted to get these booklets out to businesses for their customers and into the hands of residents because she is concerned about what could happen in the coming days.
“As things are beginning to open up, we have to apply effective measures so no situation like this can happen again,” she said. “There is vital information we all need to know to stay well, and this is what these booklets offer.”
The illustrations and simple language of the booklets make it clear how viruses and bacteria spread, why handwashing works, and how measures now required, such as masks and social distancing, can prevent the spread of germs.
For several days in a row, Jessica and a team of volunteers, dressed in their signature yellow jackets and caps and protective gear, visited essential businesses in the area. She says the experience opened her eyes about her own neighborhood.
“So many people were appreciative,” she said. “I saw stores I’d never noticed before and met people I’ve never met and I found out what a nice community we have here. People would ask us how much the booklets cost and were so surprised we were giving them out for free.
“There was one man, 77 years old, sitting in front of his business that was closed. He was worried about the future and especially about his sister who was finding the isolation hard to bear. Everyone is going a bit crazy being confined to their homes, he said. When we offered him these booklets for his shop, he started crying and thanked us for doing what we were doing. I had to hold myself back from crying too.”
Worldwide VM distribution of these booklets began approximately a month ago and is ongoing in communities around every Scientology Church and Mission across the globe. The Church of Scientology International Dissemination and Distribution Center made this possible by printing five million (5,000,000) copies of Stay Well booklets. The three booklets may also be read and downloaded from the How to Stay Well Prevention Resource Center on the Scientology website along with more than a dozen public service announcements.
The Church of Scientology Volunteer Ministers program is a religious social service created in the mid-1970s by Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard. It constitutes one of the largest and most visible international independent relief forces. The Volunteer Minister’s mandate is to be “a person who helps his fellow man on a volunteer basis by restoring purpose, truth and spiritual values to the lives of others.”
The Scientology religion was founded by author and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church of Scientology was formed in Los Angeles in 1954 and the religion has expanded to more than 11,000 Churches, Missions and affiliated groups, with millions of members in 167 countries.
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