During this uncertain and somewhat worrying period of time in our lives, stories appear of individuals who go above and beyond to help those in need and who lift the dark cloud which has lurked over the country, and the world, of late.
One of these amazing individuals is 99-year-old veteran Captain Tom Moore, who pledged to walk 100 laps of his garden using his Zimmer frame in order to raise money for the the NHS. As he fast approached his 100th Birthday, Tom set out on this mission with the hope of initially raising £1000 for NHS Charities Together.
Captain Tom’s fundraising efforts were very quickly spread on social media and his story was picked up by major media channels and rapidly ‘went viral’. When his story began to become more well known, his story captured the hearts of the nation, and of the worlds, and his target of raising £1000 was very quickly passed and only sped up from there. Within days, and before even finishing his 100 laps (of which he was doing 10 per day) his Just Giving page had received well over £1 million of donations and did not slow down.
Captain Tom’s final 10 laps were captured on platforms including the BBC and ITV and was seen across various worldwide news outlets. The donations are now close to £30 million pounds, which is an unbelievable achievement for Captain Tom and his family and will do wonders for helping those in need.
Once his 100 laps were done, Captain Tom decided that he was going to continue to walk as long as donations kept flowing in. He told the Calling Peston, ITV News’ political podcast, he will “try and continue walking for all the time that people are kind enough, and thoughtful enough to give some money to such a good cause”.
Captain Tom has now, quite rightly, become a national icon, and was asked to open the Harrogate NHS Nightingale Hospital. He appeared via video link at the virtual ceremony, which was held to open the 500-bed facility at Harrogate Convention Centre, the first of seven field hospitals built outside a city. Captain Tom received a standing ovation from NHS staff and military personnel.
Speaking at the opening, Captain Tom said: “All the doctors and nurses throughout the national health service are doing such a magnificent job under very difficult conditions. Every day, they’re putting themselves in harm’s way and they’re doing it with a determination that only we can do. We must all say, ‘thank you very much to the national health service,’ all of you, everyone throughout the whole system, who are doing such a magnificent job.”
On top of all of this, Captain Tom also teamed up with Michael Ball for a fundraising cover of ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’. The charity single also features The NHS Voices of Care choir and went straight into The Official Big Top 40 chart at No 1.
His amazing fundraising efforts have seen petitions to see Captain Tom receive a knighthood. When asked how he would feel about this, he humbly said: “Well I don’t think much about that – never ever did I anticipate I would get a knighthood.
“I must say, the sound of Sir Thomas Moore sounds alight,” he added, “but I don’t think it will happen.”
Captain Tom has been congratulated by many members of the public, celebrities and people of importance, including Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Kate. Dame Vera even sent Captain Tom a personalised letter to thank him for his efforts.
We are not alone in thanking Captain Tom Moore for his amazing fundraising efforts for NHS Charities Together and for bringing the country together in a time when it was truly needed. We wish him a very happy 100th birthday and look forward to him hopefully receiving a knighthood!
To donate to Captain Tom Moore’s Just Giving fundraising page, visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/tomswalkforthenhs
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