Fundraising | Celebrating BWC Spirit

Celebrating BWC Spirit

BWC Spirit Logo We are highlighting the amazing things our colleagues have done and achieved during the pandemic.

Our teams have bravely stood by the side of our patients, changed how they have worked to keep key and emergency services running and gone beyond the Trust to help colleagues in other parts of the NHS.

They have done so with an approach and spirit that is uniquely BWC and we want to celebrate that and what has been achieved.

From frontline clinical colleagues to our unseen and often unsung heroes in labs, offices and in our corridors - everyone has had a part to play and we’re sharing some of their stories over the next two weeks.

If you would like to thank individuals or teams either by sharing some kind words, pictures or a short video we would love to see them. You can submit your messages, pictures or videos by emailing


By Nicky Weston, Head of Marketing and Communications, Fundraising 

Fundraising team What was your experience of the pandemic? 

The last 12 months have been a year like no other. But when the world stopped, we’re proud to say our fabulous army of loyal supporters didn’t. 

Although lots of our exciting fundraising activity was postponed, the kindness and generosity of our wonderful donors soared, ensuring our charity could keep doing all it could to benefit the work of our two fantastic hospitals. 

All this energy and enthusiasm has helped fund pioneering research into potential treatments for a new disease in children, known as PIMS-TS, which is linked to COVID-19. As well as state-of-the-art equipment, departmental improvements and items to help entertain and distract our young patients who had to be in hospital for considerable periods of time, with limited visiting. 

We also launched our first ever fundraising appeal to support Forward Thinking Birmingham, through our Fight For All The Feels campaign. 

What was the hardest part? 

As a charity we had to quickly adapt and react to cope with the impact of the pandemic. 

Just as our heroes and colleagues within the hospitals continued to go above and beyond for our patients and families, despite the fear and anxiety surrounding the virus, so too did our fabulous team of fundraisers.  

With many of our events cancelled, we adapted and launched our biggest ever calendar of virtual events – such as Big Gig and our Christmas Concert – securing support from a raft of well-known celebrities in the process including Robbie Williams, Beverley Knight, Alison Hammond and James Blunt to name but a few. 

In addition, our bravery saw us trial our first-ever TV advert for the children’s hospital – voiced by Julie Walters – in an attempt to bolster fundraising income. 

We also volunteered our time to help out at the front of the hospital, signposting patients and families visiting during the height of the pandemic. 

How did you cope? 

As a fundraising team, most of us had to (and still are) embrace working remotely – which for a really visible – and sociable – team was a tough challenge. 

We thrive off being able to meet our supporters and peers within the hospital face-to-face and had to adapt quickly to zoom calls. 

We also went into ‘appeal’ mode, launching our Covid-19 emergency appeal. This saw: 

  • A grant from the Burdett Nursing Trust provide invaluable resilience and ongoing PTSD training to our nurses, supporting them during undoubtedly the hardest time of their careers.  

  • Gifts in kind secured to enable us to create care packages and hampers for our staff, full of toiletries, food and personal care items to keep them going.  

  • Public donations allowed us to send out care packages to patients being treated by our mental health service, Forward Thinking Birmingham, as well as provide mobile phones to the most vulnerable young people to ensure they could continue to access care from home. 

  • A fantastic reaction to our philanthropic Rapid Response Appeal enabled us to fund emergency accommodation for families from outside the region who were moved to the care of our Children’s Hospital during the pandemic, ensuring they could be close to their children during this scary time.  

And above all else, it was thanks to our external fundraisers who turned their hands to all manner of virtual and socially-distanced events to ensure we could continue to raise money for our hospitals long after the pandemic is over.  

What did you learn? 

That we are a really versatile team and no challenge was ever too big to stop us engaging with our supporters and driving much-needed income. 

How do you think it changed the team? 

We have become more agile, more creative and more driven than ever to raise the funds needed to support our fabulous hospitals. 

Beyond your team, who has inspired you during the pandemic? 

But side-by-side with us, through the launch of our Covid-19 Appeal, the public, local businesses, organisations, charitable trusts and foundations, were more determined than ever to make sure our expert doctors, physicians and nurses could continue to care for those that needed them during the crisis, as well as those who need them now and in the future. 

Bolder, braver and more creative with their fundraising than ever, not only did our supporters raise significant sums of money but they also volunteered time, took on new roles and even delivered medication and care packages to young people at home who couldn’t leave the house. 

From the NHS Sweaty Selfie challenge, run by our brilliant friends at Gymshark, which raised a staggering £180,000 in just two weeks – and helped get people fit and healthy during the first lockdown – to the endless laps around gardens, cycling challenges on exercise bikes, climbing of the world’s tallest buildings by walking up staircases, video gaming sessions and virtual gigs and quizzes. The support we’ve received this last 12 months has been nothing short of phenomenal. 

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