During the last 2 weeks I’ve visited the Association of Voluntary Sector Chief Execs; Great Ormond Street Hospital Charity; Birmingham Children’s and Women’s Hospital Charity; Moorfields Eye Hospital Charity; Nottingham Hospital Charity; met with personnel from NHS England, The Media Trust, Withers, and Paul Sarfaty: Chair of our Charity Chairs meeting; attended the NHS 70 Steering Group evaluation and attended the Daily Mail Health Heroes Awards Dinner.
It’s been amazing to meet with and visit so many passionate and impactful people and charities. What I’ve learnt over the last 2 weeks is the huge value in our diversity and our unity. We are individual and local, focusing on our own situations and using our own unique strengths and skills to make the most of every opportunity we have. No one charity can be the same, because no one hospital situation is the same. Some of our hospitals have national remits and renowned international specialisms; many are striving to be elite in very particular and expert fields of research, medicine or procedures. There are different personalities, different constraints and opportunities. These all illustrate the value in our diversity.
But we also have a huge collective experience and vision. For me this was illustrated most at the truly humbling and inspirational Daily Mail Health Heroes Awards Dinner on Monday night. Highlighting the achievements, immense dedication and ‘Ubuntu’ attitude of the 5 finalists including John Gaunt, 89 year old Royal Free Hospital Charity volunteer. The evening, in aid of NHS Charities Together and organised by Imperial Health Charity, celebrated diverse individuals who were united in their work for the good of others through the NHS. From doctor, to volunteer, to cleaner, to consultant, to nurse – all united in excellence and a passion for providing the best ever health and well-being in society. It is this vision that unites us all as NHS Charities. Individually we are unique and special in our diversity, but collectively we are powerful and have strength in our unity of vision and value-base. As NHS Charities, together we are big and local, diverse and united.
‘I can do things you cannot, you can do things I cannot; together we can do great things.’ Mother Teresa
Chief Exec, Association of NHS Charities