I am returning to the cricket field this year for the first time in 33 years, aged 57, I am going to donate money to the NHS for every run I score, and if you want to support me that would be great!
I am also going to recognise their exceptional work throughout the COVID-19 pandemic by wearing rainbow laces, using a rainbow grip, wearing an NHS pin on my cap/sunhat, sweatbands and having NHS rainbow stickers on the back of my bats.
Subject to selection I am hoping to play for Penkridge on Saturday and Sundays and to help Barlaston on Sundays with their newly launched development team as often as I can. I am registered with both on Play Cricket and that will be the official tally of any runs scored throughout the season. I will also include them in my weekly cricket diary, which Gray-Nicolls are generously supporting.
As a family we have been very fortunate to date throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and have been more than aware of the exceptional performance of the NHS. I grew up ‘knowing’ that the NHS was there when you needed it (and I most certainly have over the years – my mother used to joke that a weekend just wasn’t a weekend without her having to take me to the A&E department as a boy), and despite everything that has been thrown at them they continued to be there for us.
I first started to think about ways to combine my return to cricket with support for the NHS in November when I purchased a Gray-Nicolls NHS Charities Together Cricket Bat.
I have no intention of ever using this bat. I wanted it as a permanent reminder of the year, as a recurring ‘concern’ I have is that when this is all over we will move on with our lives and the work of the NHS will be consigned to a dusty part of of our memories.
I want to do something to prevent that.
One way is to try and maintain some focus through this sponsorship idea, and by the use of the laces, grips and stickers (see below), but I would also like to establish an annual charity match to provide ongoing support and recognition. This is not something I have a lot of experience in so any help would be most welcome.
A couple of ideas include: a match between one of my old clubs Barlaston Cricket Club and my new club Penkridge Cricket Club possibly to incorporate some ‘old boys’ returning to their clubs; a T20 competition at Penkridge with a cup may be an option (Guest appearances could be accommodated).
UPDATE: Penkridge Committee have set aside Monday 30th August for a NHS Charity Cricket Day!!!
Please consider sharing this post on your social media, with friends, colleagues and club members, basically anyone you think may be interested.
If you are interested their are links below as to where I got the NHS items:
You can purchase the Rainbow Laces from Esska Shoes for £6 a pair.
You can purchase the NHS Bat Stickers on ebay via jonesthebat100 for £2 each.
You can purchase the Rainbow Bat Grips on eBay via getpaddedup for £4.90 each
You can purchase NHS Rainbow Proud of Nurse and Doctor NHS Pin Badge Enamel Brooch on eBay via wp_online for £3.25
How To Sponsor
It will be easier for me to keep track if you could use the form below, but if you prefer to leave a comment below or email that will be no problem.
By far the BEST way though is to make a donation through the Just Giving Page I have set up.
Williamson Boucher Cricket for their generous donations to be raffled.
For the record there are many many ‘heroes’ of the NHS, all worthy of support and praise. I mean no disrespect to them in my choice of the NHS. I have chosen NHS Charities Together as they are not geographically based but if you want to donate and support a local trust or charity related to the NHS that is absolutely great. It would be good to know how much you raise purely from a personal view of knowing how much “we” raised at the end of the year, but if you prefer not then no problem at all.
I have chosen not to say how much per run I am contributing as I don’t want that to influence your decision. Every little helps as they say and at the end of the season I will publish the amount raised via sponsorship and the total amount raised.