By Cam Lucadou-Wells
In a stunning act of generosity, a Springvale South milk bar is giving away boxfuls of protective face-masks.
Greater Dandenong councilor Loi Truong, the owner of the shop in Darren Road, has been giving out the 3100-strong stockpile for free.
As of 4 June, he still had nearly 1500 masks left.
The gesture is also largely thanks to a Braybrook fashion company Veducci, which makes and supplies hospital protective masks.
Cr Truong said the giveaway was born from the Vietnamese community’s desire to repay Australia’s welcoming of refugees about 40 years ago.
While 1 million Vietnamese refugees arrived on Australian shores, up to 800,000 may have perished at sea in the attempt, Cr Truong said.
In that light, Vietnamese groups in the South East raised $43,000 for this year’s bushfire recovery appeal, he said.
“The Vietnamese came here because Australians have welcomed them.
“Every Vietnamese feel that they want to pay that back.”