It was a quiet Saturday morning in April. While many people are enjoying their weekends, some associates from Coca-Cola Indonesia were busy preparing and getting ready to interview someone inspiring, who is willing to risk his life in the name of humanity. That person is none other than dr. Handoko Gunawan, Sp. P, a 79-year-old pulmonary specialist, who is actively treating COVID-19 patients.

In his old age, Handoko is well aware that the disease is very dangerous. But, instead of staying at home, Handoko chose to take care of COVID-19 patients. It wasn’t an easy choice because due to his decision, Handoko was infected with coronavirus. Handoko is one of the many unsung heroes, who are fighting on the frontline against the pandemic.

For Coca-Cola Indonesia, the story of these unsung heroes must be told to show the public the meaning of humanity, especially in today’s difficult situation. This virus has threatened the entire society, regardless of countries, ethnicity, or economic status. Our lives are no longer the same since the virus outbreak. We can no longer work or do activities freely. The economy is slowing down. The fatal impact of coronavirus, which can lead to death, has also caused endless anxiety.

Under current situation, people need to hear more positive things that can make them believe that humanity still exists and no one is facing this problem alone. We are fighting this disease together. “This is the time where we must spread positive hopes and see that humanity exists. Mini movie ‘For The Human Race (FTHR)’ is a story about humanity and sacrifices from heroes who are in the front line,” said Fauziah Syafarina Nasution, Communication Manager for Coca-Cola Indonesia. 

Spreading positive messages through ‘For The Human Race (FTHR)’

Yulia Suraatmaadja, Senior Brand Manager Sparkling Coca-Cola Indonesia and Arifa Islamie, Senior Content Manager Coca-Cola Indonesia, are the people behind the making of mini movie titled ‘For The Human Race – Indonesia’.

“FTHR is a positive narrative that we want to convey to the global and local community and focuses on positive stories behind the problem we are facing right now. It will also put the spotlight on heroes at the frontline who have fought tirelessly and without fear,” said Arifa.

Coca-Cola Indonesia has a long history in delivering positive messages filled with hopes and a spirit of togetherness. When the world is experiencing a pandemic with massive impacts on all levels of society, positive messages and kindness would become a ray of hope that can strengthen and restore people’s beliefs in humanity.

To achieve this mission, FTHR video was made to spread the spirit of humanity to those who are under pressures and struggling due to the pandemic, whether they directly engage with the virus, such as patients, doctors, nurses, health workers, hospital staff, as well as staff from gardening and funeral services, or other parties who do not have direct contact, such as people who must reduce their activities outside home.

“We have to show respect and appreciate those who are fighting on the front line,” said Yulia, who has joined Coca-Cola Indonesia since 2011.

Yulia added that FTHR video is aimed at inviting and educating people to strictly follow health protocols, such as washing hands with soap or disinfectants, and using masks to reduce the virus spread. “Since the message is very important, Handoko agrees to support the Coca-Cola Company to deliver the message,” said Yulia.

However, sharing a positive message has its own challenge for Yulia and Arifa. There are many people who dedicated themselves and their expertise in fighting coronavirus in Indonesia, so it is difficult to choose one to represent these heroes. However, Yulia and Arifa see that Handoko has a unique narrative. 

In early March, before Indonesia officially announced the first case of COVID-19, Handoko has already treated patients with COVID-19 symptoms at a private hospital in Jakarta where he practices as pulmonary specialist. Handoko is committed to doing his duty despite knowing the risks. Then, shortly after Handoko treated patients with COVID-19 symptoms, he was infected with the virus. As a result, he must be quarantined at the hospital and separated from his family for two weeks. 

“He was already retired but is still active in treating his patients, including those with COVID-19 symptoms,” said Arifa, who joined Coca-Cola Indonesia in 2016. Arifa also noted that during the FTHR video making process, Handoko’s and crew’s health has always been the top priority.

The interview was conducted through video conference and no production team was deployed to the field. “Since Handoko has just recovered from COVID-19 after undergoing quarantine, he strictly limits physical interaction apart from his family members who live in the same house and hospital staff and team. That’s why the interview was done on Saturday morning when Handoko was resting at home,” said Arifa. 

Through ‘The Unsung Heroes Indonesia For The Human Race’ video that features Handoko,  the Coca-Cola company wants to convince us all that wherever we are, whatever roles we play during the pandemic, we must believe and keep our enthusiasm to share kindness. “The only way to get through this is by supporting each other and fight together,” said Arifa.

Getting to Know dr. Handoko Gunawan, Sp. P, the Unsung Heroes

Handoko Gunawan still remembers exactly several patients with COVID-19 symptoms that came to the hospital where he practiced on March 5. While waiting for swab test results, Handoko is committed to carrying out his duty as a pulmonary specialist and treating the patients even though his life was at stake. On the risk of contracting the virus, Handoko saw it as a risk of being a doctor. Due to his dedication to treating COVID-19 patients, Handoko was infected with the virus. He was recovered after being quarantined for two weeks.   

The danger of contracting the virus also threatens other medical personnel who bet their lives against coronavirus, including doctors, nurses, laboratory workers, cashiers, and cleaning services at hospitals. They realize that coronavirus is contagious and can lead to death, but they still serve with all of their hearts.

As a good citizen, Handoko said that the best way to show respect toward the sacrifice of these paramedics is to strictly follow health protocols, wash your hands regularly, and keep your distance from other people. The society can also show their support for health workers by providing medical equipment.

Have you done your part? Let’s go. Now is the time to spread hope and believe in humanity!