We want to thank everyone for their support of our Hospital Heroes Appeal. Our community of supporters responded in a way we have never seen before. We have been deeply moved and humbled by your incredible generosity – you have given your time, money and energy without hesitation.
In March 2020, with spiralling numbers of critically ill COVID-19 patients, King’s College Hospital in south London declared a major incident. Just a few days later, we launched the Hospital Heroes Appeal: our very first emergency appeal in response to the huge outpouring of public concern for NHS staff and COVID-19 patients.
The scale of the pandemic was unprecedented and King’s had one of the highest COVID admissions in the country. Wards were converted to treat hundreds of COVID patients and our dedicated and knowledgeable staff, faced with a new and ever-evolving disease, more than rose to the challenge. Some came out of retirement, others graduated early and thousands were redeployed to the front line. All sacrificed time with their own loved ones to care for ours.
We were able to move quickly, thanks to your support, allocating emergency funds and distributing the thousands of items that had been donated. The food, drinks and toiletries were gratefully received by staff, who were working around the clock. We have also been able to set up wellbeing hubs, which offer care and respite to exhausted staff. The electronic tablets we supplied are a lifeline for many; often, it is the only way isolated patients can see and talk to their families. And, for those who face the very worst of the pandemic, specialist bereavement and psychological support services have been put in place.
Our Hospital Heroes Appeal was a promise to staff and patients – a promise that we would not leave them to face the pandemic alone. As well as raising funds and donating gifts, our community sent hundreds of thoughtful and uplifting messages to hospital staff that boosted their morale and confidence. Together, we have been able to offer kindness, thanks and practical support to our staff as they continue to work under enormous pressure, caring for sick and isolated patients.
Our world changed in 2020 and we have no doubt that the coming months will bring many more challenges. But, with your continued support, we will overcome any difficulties and forge ahead because, like you, we are dedicated to supporting our heroic NHS staff and improving the lives of vulnerable patients.
We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to everyone who has given so much so willingly – you have helped us keep our promise.