Liverpool and England football star Jordan Henderson surprises Cheshire schoolchildren for NHS Big Tea at after-school sports club

On 18th May 2023
Categories: 2023

Captain of Liverpool football club and England player Jordan Henderson MBE surprised school children in Cheshire this week in his role as our ambassador, by dropping in on their after-school sports club for an NHS Big Tea celebration – following their prize-winning party last year. 

The NHS Big Tea celebration included a footie match between the school’s students and NHS staff

Pupils at Springfield School in Crewe were overjoyed by the visit from the FA and League cup winner, who spearheaded the #PlayersTogether initiative that encouraged professional footballers to donate to the NHS during the Covid-19 pandemic. The school was entered into a free prize draw after signing up to host a party for the NHS Big Tea – our nationwide fundraiser for the NHS, which this year takes place on the health service’s 75th anniversary on 5th July. 

Catering for 4–19-year-olds with a range of disabilities and learning difficulties, Springfield School has an on-site NHS team of nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and speech therapists, who work to support students’ health needs alongside their education. Students signed up to the NHS Big Tea to thank the NHS staff who do so much for them and raised vital funds to support their local NHS charity, Mid Cheshire Hospitals Charity, in the process. 

Jordan Henderson MBE, who has been ambassador for NHS Charities Together since 2021, said:

“I’m a massive champion of the NHS and it always blows me away to see the scale of support they provide to local communities. Meeting the kids today and seeing how their lives are made better thanks to the amazing staff on site has been really special. Along with the teachers they’re setting young people up for a better future and working tirelessly at it, like so many other NHS workers and volunteers all over the UK.   

“Everyone’s got a story about how the NHS has helped them and the NHS Big Tea gives us a chance to get together and celebrate the entire workforce – including the staff at Springfield – and let them know how appreciated they are.” 

The school’s on-site team of NHS staff joined in on the sport activities

Now entering its sixth year, the NHS Big Tea brings the nation together on the NHS’ birthday to raise funds that help the NHS go further and provide extra support for staff, patients, and volunteers. There are over 230 NHS charities around the UK and they support the NHS in all sorts of ways – from innovative research and facilities for patients, to mental health support for staff and community initiatives that help us to live well. 

Lisa Hodgkison, Headteacher at Springfield School, said:

“Winning the visit from Jordan was so unexpected, and we have been so excited to show him what Springfield is all about! We value our on-site NHS team so much, and quite simply couldn’t do our job without them. It can be challenging work at times, but it is always so lovely to see the genuine care and love they show our young people.  

“We took part in the NHS Big Tea to raise funds for Mid Cheshire Hospitals Charity, but even more importantly to celebrate our on-site NHS staff. There was a raffle, awards, and the students created posters about roles within the NHS and with messages of thanks. One said: ‘thank you for helping me to walk’– and you can’t underestimate how life changing that is. It was a wonderful afternoon and we’re excited for another party this summer!” 

The tea party ended with the students asking Jordan some questions they had prepared that morning

Ellie Orton OBE, Chief Executive at NHS Charities Together, said:

“We’re incredibly lucky to have Jordan in the NHS’ corner and we know the kids have had a ball with him today – pardon the pun!  

“As a charity we support over 230 NHS charities across the UK, who together provide the important extras that make a difference to NHS staff, patients and communities. Fundamentally NHS charities are here to help the NHS go further for everyone, and the NHS Big Tea is a crucial part of that. We know there are lots of parties to come over the next couple of months, and we’re excited to see everyone getting together and fundraising. Every celebration can help us provide vital support, so please consider raising a cuppa to the NHS, and getting behind the NHS Big Tea!” 

With your support, we can ensure staff have somewhere to rest during busy shifts, that those who are struggling with their mental health have access to counselling support, and that peer-to-peer training is available for staff so that they can better help each other.

Photo Credit: James Speakman/PA Wire

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