From sponsored head shaves, team marathons and virtual dance-athons, the last five-and-a-half months has seen a whirlwind of fundraising for the Rotherham Hospital and Community Charity’s staff appeal.
In April 2020, the charity launched the Rotherham NHS Superheroes appeal, encouraging the public to support the town’s dedicated NHS staff through the coronavirus crisis.
Since then, the charity has received £20,000 in donations from generous individuals, community groups and businesses. The charity has also received almost 250 donations ranging from Personal Protective Equipment, refreshments, hand-made scrubs and laundry bags, Amazon Wish List parcels, Easter eggs and toiletries.
Martin Havenhand, Chairman of The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We launched the Rotherham NHS Superheroes campaign on 1 April following an unprecedented demand from the Rotherham community and beyond to support the NHS.
“It has been an incredibly demanding time for our colleagues across the Trust. Everyone from doctors and nurses on the front line to porters, cleaners, support and administration staff have showed such initiative and determination to get us through such unprecedented circumstances.
“It has been reassuring and humbling to know people appreciated our staff and are as proud of them as we are.
“Colleagues have been fuelled during busy shifts with donations of takeaway food and fruit and vegetable boxes, offered lifts to work so they can avoid public transport, and extra resources such as masks, scrubs and hand gel have been very much appreciated.
“We’d like to say a heartfelt thank you to everyone who donated or fundraised to help us reach such an incredible milestone. We were also grateful to receive lots of lovely messages of support and rainbow paintings from children. Knowing the public were with us every step of the way has really lifted our spirits during such difficult times.”
In addition to the Rotherham NHS Superheroes campaign, the charity has received £66,500 from NHS Charities Together, a membership organisation representing, supporting and championing NHS charities.
The funds will pay for the Trauma Resilience Management Programme - a peer support service to help boost employees’ resilience to challenging times in their career, such as tackling Covid-19.
Funds from NHS Charities Together have also been earmarked for the Nightingale Frontline Leadership Support Service, managed by the Florence Nightingale Foundation. The service is facilitated by volunteer senior nurses and allows colleagues from the Trust to access additional mentoring from their peers.
Mr Havenhand added: “We cannot thank the people of Rotherham enough for the generosity and support you have shown throughout this crisis. But please don’t stop now – as a small charity we continue to need your help throughout the year, every year to provide extra funds to support our patients and staff.
“We’d love to see people continue to support the charity this autumn by participating in our virtual fundraising challenges. Alternatively, we are looking forward to seeing what inventive fundraising ideas you have too.”
The Rotherham NHS Superheroes campaign is still live. Donations can be made via Just Giving - https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/RotherhamNHSSuperheroes. Alternatively, call the charity on 01709 426821 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
A host of virtual fundraising ideas can also be found on the Trust’s website - http://www.therotherhamft.nhs.uk/Fundraising/Virtual_Fundraising/
Photo caption: Chief Nurse Angela Wood celebrating the Rotherham Hospital and Community Charity reaching the £20K milestone.