From footballers and rugby players to Yorkshire-born actors, the Lord Mayor of Bradford to the President of the Bradford Council of Mosques, prominent figures across the district are encouraging members of the public to say “thank you” to their local NHS heroes in Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust’s first Charity appeal.

The Care Trust’s charity, Better Lives, is inviting communities across Bradford, Craven, Airedale, Wharfedale and Wakefield to take part in its first official appeal, ‘Make a Life Better’, to support staff who have delivered vital healthcare to the most vulnerable people during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Prominent public figures linked to Bradford and the surrounding areas are also supporting the campaign, through short video messages about why they are backing the appeal, which will be shared across the Care Trust and Charity’s social media accounts over the coming days and weeks. Supporters include Keighley-born Alistair Campbell, and Bradford-born actor Peter Firth, as well as players from Bradford City Football Club and Bradford Bulls Rugby Club. Local leaders are also urging their communities to get involved, including the Lord Mayor of Bradford, the President of the Bradford Council of Mosques, and the Bishop of Bradford.

Donations to the appeal will go directly towards enhancing staff wellbeing and can benefit staff in different ways, for example: £15 can provide a winter self-care pack for staff wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE); £50 could provide 20 thermal flasks for district nurses and health visitors working in the local communities; £200 could help pay for a hot meal for 20 staff working long hours on an inpatient ward; and £1,000 could pay for a recovery and resilience day for a group of frontline staff.

Andrew McCarthy, Better Lives Charity Fundraising Officer, urges members of the public to support the appeal: “If members of the public would like to support the appeal, donations can be made through individual giving, or as a cash or in-kind donation as a business. Local communities are also encouraged to fundraise for the charity or consider volunteering at the Care Trust.

“Messages of support are welcome too; simply join along online by tweeting a thank you, or the reason why they are supporting the appeal, to the Better Lives Charity Twitter account @BDCFT_BLCharity, using the hashtag #MakeALifeBetter.”

Donations can be made via the Better Lives JustGiving page: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/BLwinter. Or, by texting ‘BLIVES’ followed by the amount they wish to give, to 70450 (e.g. BLIVES20 to donate £20) – Texts cost the value of their donation plus one standard rate message.

To fundraise, or if a business or organisation would like to support the charity, please email: betterlivescharity@bdct.nhs.uk.

Follow the charity on Twitter: @betterlivescharity_bdcft https://twitter.com/BDCFT_BLCharity.

The Trust itself operates as a Corporate Trustee for the Charity and the responsibility for the management and use of the funds held lies with the Board of the Trust.