Staff at ELFT are to benefit from Captain Sir Thomas Moore's epic sponsored walk to raise money for charity. Most people will be aware of the achievements of Captain Tom, as he became widely known, a former British Army officer and centenarian, who undertook to walk hundreds of circuits around his garden he lives with his walking frame for support. He decided to do this on the run-up to his 100th during the COVID-19 pandemic over 24 days.
As a resident of Bedfordshire where the Trust provides mental health, community health, and drug and alcohol services, he wanted to ensure that local health care staff benefited from his efforts. So he made a donation of £5000 to ELFT's Charitable Fund.
It started on 6 April 2020, when at the age of 99, Captain Tom began to walk laps of his garden in aid of NHS Charities Together, with the goal of raising £1,000 by his hundredth birthday. He made many media appearances and became a popular household name attracting over 1.5 million individual donations. He featured in a cover version of the song "You'll Never Walk Alone", with proceeds going to NHS Charities Together. The single topped the UK music charts and made him the oldest person to achieve a UK number one.
Chief Executive Dr Navina Evan CBE was thrilled to hear the news. “On behalf of our staff I would like to thank Captain Tom for his generosity. This could not have come at a better time. Our staff have worked so hard over the last three and a half months. I don’t know how we can acknowledge their selflessness but this will go some way to helping us to find a suitable way to say thank you to them. I really appreciate that Captain Tom thought of us and am really grateful.”
On the morning of his hundredth birthday (30 April), the total raised by his walk passed £30 million, and by the time the campaign closed at the end of that day, this had increased to over £32.79 million. His birthday was marked in a number of ways, including flypasts by the Royal Air Force and the British Army. He received over 150,000 cards, and was appointed as honorary colonel of the Army Foundation College. His knighthood was announced on 19 May, and conferred the next day.
Anyone can make a donation ...
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ELFT Charitable Fund
The ELFT Charitable Fund provides vital support to staff and to the communities the Trust provides services to. Charitable Funds do not replace NHS funding but they allow trusts to fund different and more creative approaches to supporting staff and service users. There is an application process to apply for funding. Novel, imaginative and alternative projects are especially welcomed.
Any member of staff can apply for a Charitable Fund grant to support a staff or service user initiative that brings benefits to the workforce or local community.