A cherry tree has been planted at each of the three main Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust hospital sites to remember Captain Sir Tom Moore, on what would have been his 101st birthday (Friday 30 April).
It’s something being repeated at hospitals up and down the country, thanking Captain Sir Tom for the incredible £38.9 million he raised for the NHS Covid-19 Appeal.
Local hospitals have already seen what a difference some of that money has made.
Funds received by Mid and South Essex Hospitals Charity have meant it has been able to buy patient communication devices to support those who were in hospital and unable to see loved ones. Staff wellbeing has been supported through wellbeing hubs and the continuation of long term initiatives such as counselling services and mental health first aid training.
Captain Sir Tom Moore’s money has also supported 40 wards and departments across the Trust, providing items from staff room furniture to Makaton training, a language programme that allows communication through signs, with speech and symbols.
Clare Panniker, the Trust’s chief executive, who was on tree planting duties at Broomfield Hospital, said: “The planting of these trees at our main Broomfield, Southend and Basildon hospital sites is a lasting legacy to an incredible man. His amazing fundraising has shown us that one person can make a real difference, just as our staff working together have all made a huge difference throughout the pandemic.”
The tree at Broomfield was planted in the newly-opened garden of remembrance, which was also funded by monies from the Captain Sir Tom Moore fund, and provides a dedicated quiet space for staff to visit and remember colleagues.
The Basildon Hospital tree was planted by the site’s managing director Andrew Pike near the Renal unit, and at Southend Hospital the tree was planted near the rainbow sign at the front of the hospital by its managing director Yvonne Blucher.