Almost four fifths of those working in the NHS have undertaken volunteer work or raised money to help others during the pandemic, a survey released on Public Service Day has revealed.
The nation’s nurses, doctors, carers, healthcare assistants and administrators have been some of the hardest working during one of the most difficult periods in the country’s history, saving countless lives.
But remarkably, they have still found time to give something back to society, according to a national survey commissioned by public sector and civil service membership club Boundless.
It’s a revelation that makes Public Service Day on Wednesday 23 June all the more poignant.
Darren Milton at Boundless said: “If we didn’t know already just how special the people who work in the NHS are, these survey results really underline it.
“Not only have they been working tirelessly to save lives in such difficult times but they are also the heart and soul of the communities they serve, often volunteering for roles to help others or raising money for good causes.
“Now it is time, on Public Service Day, for us all to say ‘thank you’ and let them know we really do appreciate everything they do.”
More than 78% of those working in the NHS have volunteered or raised money during the pandemic, but not for the first time.
In fact, those polled said they have raised on average £10,425 per person during the course of their career for charity.
Some of the activities supported by those in the NHS over the last 15 months include:
- Donating items (31%)
- Delivering meals or items to the underprivileged or vulnerable people, (18%)
- Producing and sharing important information on Covid-19, (17%)
- Taking part in sponsored walks or runs, (15%)
- Organising fundraising events, (13%)
- Organising virtual quiz nights, (11%)
- Making or donating PPE, (11%)
- Providing online counselling services, (11%)
Public Service Day, officially launched by the United Nations as long ago as 2003, has barely been recognised in the UK until two years ago, when Boundless began campaigning for it to be celebrated more publicly.
Now its profile is growing, with backing from MPs on all sides of the House and increasing recognition across the country.
Caroline Ansell, MP for Eastbourne, said: “In normal times, what these people do in classrooms, offices, hospitals and care homes, to name just a few locations, is something to celebrate.
“But over the last 15 months, the work of our dedicated public servants has been the difference between life and death, the difference between vulnerable children staying in school or being lost to the system; the difference between rubbish on our streets or regular refuse collection in such challenging times.
“The whole country owes them all a debt of gratitude on Public Service Day.”
There is still work to do, however, to thank those who have given so much. A worrying 58% of people working in public service, and 55% in the NHS, say they don’t feel appreciated enough by the public.
People across the country can help change that by getting behind Public Service Day.
For more information, inspirational stories, and tips on how to get involved, please visit www.boundless.co.uk/publicserviceday and engage on social media with @bemoreboundless using the hashtags #extraordinarypeople and #PublicServiceDay.