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Coronavirus Update: #ClapBecauseWeCare Is Boosting Morale Of Health Care Workers In New York

NEW YORK (CBSNewYok) -- You've likely seen the videos of the quarantined Italians serenading their neighbors from their balconies.

Now, New Yorkers have found their own way to boost morale: A standing ovation for frontline workers from their windowsills.

Cheering, clapping, banging pots and pans, all around the city New Yorkers are giving a round of applause to healthcare workers, out their windows, CBS2's Natalie Duddridge reported Monday. Some are even playing instruments. One trumpet player blared out the Star Spangled Banner.

The movement is called #ClapBecauseWeCare.


What started on Friday nights at 7 p.m. has become a regular routine in many neighborhoods. People stuck inside, like Matt Kelly on the Upper East Side, are showing appreciation for those outside on the front lines.

"Everyone kinda opens up their windows in the courtyard area. I've seen people waving flags and stuff. It goes on for about 10 minutes," Kelly said. "Very emotional I'd say. It's sort of similar to those videos coming out of Italy. Really big sense of unity."

CORONAVIRUS: NY Health Dept. | NY Call 1-(888)-364-3065 | NYC Health Dept. | NYC Call 311, Text COVID to 692692 | NJ COVID-19 Info Hub | NJ Call 1-(800)-222-1222 or 211, Text NJCOVID to 898211 | CT Health Dept. | CT Call 211 | Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Mental health nurse Matt Mendelow has been recovering from COVID-19 for the past few weeks in his StuyTown apartment. He said hearing the cheers ring in the streets gives him a boost.

"It warms my heart. It has been really good to hear. I know people are grateful for my friends on the front lines doing this work," Mendelow said. "Like clockwork, the last few nights there's been this intense noise hooting and hollering. Even the odd person telling everyone to shut up. It wouldn't be New York without that!"

And what's more New York than spreading love the Brooklyn way with the sound of rapper Notorious B.I.G. blaring out the window. Over the weekend, a video went viral on social media of a Brooklyn neighborhood singing along. While some questioned if it was a recording or legitimate, DJ Junior Sanchez said he wants to believe it's real. He said the point is to feel good.

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"What the real core of the video is, is to bring people hope and bring people together," Sanchez said. "People feeling hope and smiling and feeling the love, especially during these times. That's what people need right now."

Bright spots are showing up everywhere you look, Duddridge reported. Even from the windows of the RIU Hotel in Times Square, which were lit up in the shape of a heart, beaming hope.

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