#LondonTogether to highlight the way Londoners are supporting others
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, is inviting Londoners to shine a light on the inspiring examples of courage, kindness and generosity being shown amidst the coronavirus crisis.
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every aspect of life in the capital, but through #LondonTogether the Mayor is urging everyone to highlight great examples of positive community action and thank our health and care staff, emergency services, key workers and volunteers for their work.
Essential social distancing measures mean Londoners have been instructed to stay home in order to protect the NHS and save lives, but the #LondonTogether message will show how the compassion and creativity of Londoners from all walks of life is still uniting communities even when they are physically apart.
Whether delivering supplies to vulnerable neighbours, checking in on those self-isolating or signing up as volunteers to support our heroes in the NHS, Londoners’ community spirit is a beacon of light during these challenging times.
Last week, Sadiq joined with other funders to launch the London Community Response and pledged an initial £1m to help support community and voluntary organisations. He has provided a special section of the London.gov.uk website to help link organisations in need of volunteers with individuals wanting to sign up to help, and this week volunteers from the Mayor’s volunteering programme, Team London, signed up to help induct NHS staff at NHS Nightingale’s education centre at the ExCeL centre.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said: “We are in the grip of a major public health crisis, with all Londoners forced to make substantial changes to their day-to-day lives to help support the NHS and save others.
“But one aspect of life that never changes is the remarkable way Londoners pull together in a time of crisis. From city-wide applause for carers and the NHS, to those delivering food parcels to neighbours, to the millions saving lives by staying home, Londoners are showing why this city is the best in the world.
“When times are rough we see the very best of our city, and these extraordinary acts of charity and empathy show that our sense of community is not confined by walls.
“These acts of kindness can make a big difference, and if we stay home, look after one another and follow the advice of the experts, we will beat this virus in London, together.”
Sir David Sloman, NHS Regional Director for London said: “These are incredibly difficult and challenging times and it has taken all of us working together to mobilise against this virus and protect our vulnerable family members, friends and neighbours.
“From the soldier building the new Nightingale Hospital to the teenager picking up the shopping for her elderly neighbour, I have been inspired by the examples of generosity and kindness being shown weekly, daily and hourly across London.”
“I wanted to give a huge ‘thank you’ in particular to the Team London volunteers who are currently helping induct NHS staff at the new Nightingale Hospital education centre in Docklands.”
Lisa Elliott, Royal College of Nursing Regional Director for London said: “The COVID-19 crisis has seen the capital’s nursing staff come together and rise to this unprecedented challenge.
“Nursing staff working in hospitals, in the community and in social care are working selflessly to make sure Londoners are getting the best care possible. Yet again, it shows how nursing staff are going above and beyond for their patients.
“But nursing staff need protection too, and that’s why access to personal protective equipment and widespread staff testing must happen at scale and pace across London.
“We have seen some extraordinary acts of kindness from the public and employers towards London’s nursing community. This is incredibly important in helping boost morale among nursing staff at a time when the demand for care is building across the capital.”
Dhruv Patel, Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s City Bridge Trust Committee, said: “It’s vital we all come together to support each other through such unprecedented, difficult times.
“It’s inspiring to see so many stories of positivity, with communities coming together to show support for key workers and help the most vulnerable in society.
“We urge people to take part in this campaign and spread some hope and happiness as we get through this pandemic.”
Martin Brookes, Chief Executive, London Plus said: “London Plus has seen at first hand the remarkable response in the capital to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“As unprecedented numbers of people step up to help and volunteer in their communities across every borough, volunteer centres, councils for voluntary services and food banks have helped channel this energy.
“From feeding vulnerable residents, delivering prescriptions to the isolated, setting up befriending services and much more, it is inspiring to see London’s community and civil society in action.”
Jim Minton, Chief Executive, Toynbee Hall said: “While everyone is feeling the effects of the crisis, those Londoners who have the least, and already face the biggest challenges are being hit hardest.
“People are suddenly without income; juggling family and caring responsibilities in cramped and overcrowded conditions; worried that they won’t get food or medication; and are isolated and in fear they don’t have anyone they can turn to.
“We’ve been working with many other charities, the council and community groups to respond to these and other urgent needs; it has been incredible to feel the spirit and willingness of Londoners to support each other, and it’s great that #LondonTogether recognizes this.
“Funds to sustain vital community work will be needed more than ever over the coming weeks and months: the London Community Response fund is a good start, and there must be more resources urgently so charities can be there for those who need us now and in the future.”
Notes to editors
Wembley Park has shown its support for the #LondonTogether campaign by lighting up Bobby Moore Bridge, Olympic Way. Picture credit: Amanda Rose - https://wetransfer.com/downloads/7ebc9cdc78de341406a0ef3edcb64be720200402212043/8cef4d2dd36faabcda4b6fc671e13bcd20200402212043/c726ee
For information and advice about the coronavirus crisis in London visit - https://www.london.gov.uk/coronavirus