A generous gift for Knighton care workers

In an act of everyday kindness and generosity of spirit, the church, local council and community have come together to say ‘thank you’ to the dedicated staff working in care homes around Knighton.

When the clapping stopped and the rainbows ended, the people who live in this area of the diocese wanted to extend their gratitude further and celebrate those who continue to look after their loved ones.

Led by Curate Reverend Matthew Gough, and with the support of St Guthlac’s Church family and Knighton Ward Council, more than £2000 has been raised to reward care home workers who are going above and beyond during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Like many early on in lockdown, Reverend Matthew and his family stood at their door on a Thursday night and clapped for the NHS. But with three care homes on his road, Matthew decided to stand outside one of the homes and clap for the carers too.

He explains: “At this stage, few were talking about the hard work and sacrifices carers were making. Considering the risks carers were taking, when I stood clapping on my own, I felt convicted that we ought to do more.”

He delivered chocolates but it didn’t seem enough – it wasn’t the recognition they deserved. “It seemed almost pathetic,” he says. “I wanted the community to do something tangible.”

So he spoke to the local Knighton Councillor, Melissa March, who has good relations with the care homes; he shared his thoughts with Vicar Adrian Jones, and they agreed, between them, to hold a community fundraiser.

“I think we expected to raise something like £200, so we have been absolutely blown away with what we collected within the space of a month,” says Matthew.

In fact, with approximately £2400 generated in total - donated through ward funds and the generosity of members of the Knighton churches and community - the staff from each of the 12 care homes will receive £200 to spend as they wish.

Having spoken to some of the care homes, Councillor March says that many have been particularly touched by the gesture and the fact the community wanted to say ‘thank you’ in a special way.

The staff have said that they will be using the money for social activities such as shopping or a team night out over Christmas.   

The collaboration between the church, council and community, is something Matthew is particularly humbled by. “People have put their money where their virtue is,” he says. “The pandemic has really brought to people’s minds how precious life is and the value of servant-hearted people.

“As a community, we appreciate the kingdom values being shown by those laying down their lives to care for others, and we honour that service.

“We also hope we might be able to encourage others to show the same thanks in their area of the diocese.”

First published on: 30th July 2020
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