Updated: Jul 17
Today, 12th May 2020, marks International Nurses’ Day and the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth. It’s a day to celebrate and recognise all that nurses around the world contribute to society. Never in recent memory has nurses’ day been such a poignant day.
So what can you do on this day (and in the future!) to give back to those who have given so much?
1. Send a card and show your gratitude
Showing your gratitude can be the easiest, cheapest, and quickest way to make a difference! Say thank you with your words or actions. Perhaps sending flowers to a nurse you know, or making treats to give to healthcare workers working long shifts – these can boost happiness levels.
You can also nominate a key worker for a personalised letter or volunteer to send a personalised letter to a key worker through The Crisis Project's Letters for the NHS initiative.
You can also send a free postcard to spread the love. BookBlock’s #PositivePost aims to ensure NHS staff and volunteers have everything they need to care for themselves. With more than 60 fun and bright styles to choose from, you just pay P&P, and give a donation if possible. All the money goes to NHS Charities Together.
Or get involved on social media. The Royal College of Nursing has created gifs and stickers you can use on Instagram stories.
2. Cook a curry and get crafty
Staying at home is another easy way to do your bit – especially if you or anyone in your household has symptoms. Whilst the government’s guidelines suggest a gradual easing of lockdown over the coming weeks and months, the message is still to stay at home unless it is essential to go out.
You may well have a stay at home routine worked out by now, but if you’re looking for ways to stave off the boredom, why not try to recreate Wagamama’s katsu curry, or learn how to make some 3D folded flowers with Sara Davies MBE this Friday at MIND’s virtual crafternoon?
3. Raise your concerns by writing to your MP
Why write to your MP? Your MP represents you, and acts as the voice of the people in parliament – so if you and your neighbours are raising an issue that’s important to you, then having your MP on your side can be a powerful tool to influence the powers that be. Not sure what to say?
4. Sign a petition to support a cause
Not so good with words but still want to support a cause? Why not sign one of the multitude of petitions to support our NHS staff, including this one to fight against the downgrading of PPE required to safely manage patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 infection. Or you can sign this open letter to call for a united global response that ensures a just recovery and transition to a better future for those most in need.
Not sure about petitions? Check out our blog outlining five reasons why you should sign that petition.
5. Donate what you can – money/time/goods/support
Anything you can give can make a massive difference. The NHS Charities Together fund has been set up to support the COVID-19 efforts, recovery and wellbeing of staff and patients and is taking donations.
You can also support with goods, care packages or other items, and some hospitals have set up Amazon Wish Lists to identify what they need. Visit your local trust’s website to see what they need and what they are able to accept.
Perhaps you’re nifty in the kitchen, and can donate a meal through Olio’s #CookForCarers campaign?