Champion’s League finalist and double cup winning Liverpool Captain, Jordan Henderson, has shared how he feels ‘inspired’ by hardworking NHS staff, and will be supporting our health service by attending the NHS Big Tea of one lucky school this summer.
Children around the UK are in with a chance of winning the Liverpool captain in a free prize draw to join them at their school, before he leaves to train for the upcoming Qatar World Cup.
Led by NHS Charities Together on 5th July, the NHS Big Tea brings the nation together to celebrate the birthday of the NHS, while raising funds to provide the extra support needed for its staff, patients, and volunteers.
Jordan, who is ambassador for NHS Charities Together, said:
“The NHS did a lot for my family when my dad was battling cancer, and I’ve always had massive gratitude for that. What happened has never left me and was probably the most difficult time of our lives. But as bad as it was, the help and support of staff made it a bit easier. They reassured my dad and helped him stay positive, and that will be with us forever.
“Since the pandemic I’ve visited a few hospitals and seen first-hand how NHS charities are helping. You can see from afar what staff have had to cope with, but to speak to them personally is something else. Some of the stories I’ve heard have been horrendous, and one of the biggest challenges going forward will be staff mental health. Thankfully I’ve seen examples of some amazing support, and I’ve been inspired by the way NHS staff have come together. To be able to help, even in some small way, means a lot.”
Now entering its fifth year, all funds raised from the NHS Big Tea contribute to key projects supporting staff mental health, the long-term recovery of the NHS following Covid-19, and community partnership programmes that prevent ill health and will take pressure off services in the future.
Working with the network of more than 230 NHS charities, NHS Charities Together take great care to ensure funds go where they are needed most, getting public support right to the heart of where it’s most effective and can take pressure off local services. To date the we have allocated more than £140 million to projects all around the UK, to help the health service go further and achieve better healthcare for us all.
Jordan, whose team narrowly missed out on becoming Premier League champions at the weekend, played a key role supporting this work, having spearheaded the #PlayersTogether initiative, where footballers donated part of their wage to support the NHS.
“I’m very proud of what all the Premier League players and women’s footballers did to try and help people in need at that time. The issues facing the NHS won’t just go away though, so it’s amazing to have an opportunity to encourage young people to get involved and support the health service. Mostly I just want to try to make them smile and enjoy the time that I’m there. But it will also get kids involved and raising funds to support the millions of NHS staff, patients and volunteers that still need our help.”
Ellie Orton OBE, Chief Executive at NHS Charities Together, said:
“The NHS can’t face every challenge alone, and as the national, independent charity caring for the NHS we are proud to have funded hundreds of incredible projects supporting staff, patients and communities.
“By hosting tea parties and inviting your friends, colleagues or classmates, the NHS Big Tea allows us to come together and say an enormous thank you to our incredible NHS. So, whether at home, in the office or in school, we’re asking the nation to pop the kettle on, grab the biscuits, and raise vital funds to help the NHS go further this July.”
Last year 4,820 hosts, including 150 NHS charities, joined in with the NHS Big Tea and raised over £500,000 to support vital NHS projects.
How to enter
All schools who sign up to host an NHS Big Tea event at nhsbigtea.co.uk will automatically be entered into the prize draw*. The lucky winners will have Jordan join them at their school for their tea party, and maybe even a kickabout.
*Terms and conditions apply