We all know the impact that the horrific attack at Manchester Arena had, not just on our amazing city, but right around the world too.
That the people of Greater Manchester pulled together at such a terrible time, providing strength for each other, standing up for others, and coming together so generously to support those affected, is testament to what makes our city so great. That unity of spirit. That sense of pride in where we live. That amazing sense of being part of a much bigger community.
We were proud to have the Manchester Survivors Choir at two of our recent St Ann’s Hospice events – our annual Light up a Life service at Manchester Cathedral where we remembered the victims and dedicated a light on our special Christmas tree in honour of each of them; and at our Manchester Midnight Walk where they sang to inspire and warm up the hundreds of people who joined us to walk 10km to raise money for our patients. Their passion to create something good out of something so horrific, and support others really hit home with all of us, and it made me think about how fantastic people can be, even when facing such terrible adversity.
Every day at the hospice we are privileged to spend time with patients who are often experiencing one of the most vulnerable times of their life. Their passion to make the most of every single day, to live the very best quality of life they can, never ceases to inspire me.
Their families and friends often throw themselves into fundraising for us, which is amazing. They run, jump, hold bake sales, dress up, cycle for miles upon miles, take part in our events and activities, decide to remember us in their Will – anything they can to raise money for St Ann’s. And it’s not just family and friends either. Their neighbours, their friends of friends, their friends of friend’s work colleagues all get involved. It’s a huge and wide spread community of passionate local people, all coming together in aid of something good, and we simply wouldn’t exist without their support.
Thank you people from across Greater Manchester for everything you do. Not just for charities like St Ann’s, but also for each other. I’m so proud to call this city my home.