First ever Thank You Day sees neighbours hail their lockdown heroes

People across the UK have come together to pay tribute to the ‘everyday heroes’ who have helped bring communities together throughout the pandemic as part of the country’s first ever Thank You Day.

Tens of thousands of events took place across the country on Sunday, July 4 to mark the inaugural Thank You Day, with BBQs, street parties, litter picks and afternoon teas held to pay tribute to carers, volunteers, NHS staff and community leaders.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson staged a BBQ with Levi Roots at 10 Downing Street, Head Womble Orinoco led a tidy-up on Wimbledon Common, Ross Kemp staged a virtual pub quiz via Facebook Live, while Prince Charles showed his support with a visit to Hospital radio.

Thank You Day started as a grassroots movement and has grown from just 13 individuals to become a nationwide event supported by hundreds of organisations.

Police officers in Birmingham join people in the community to say ‘thank you’ for Thank You Day

The campaign encouraged the nation to thank the people they are most grateful for while staging events and activities designed to have a lasting, positive impact on their communities.

Across the country, communities came together to pay tribute to those who have helped throughout the pandemic.

An interfaith ceremony was held at Coventry Cathedral, while neighbours in Northampton got together for a community BBQ at The Racecourse park and 1,000 roses were handed out in Bradford.

Julie Siddiqi MBE, founder of Together We Thrive and one of the original proposers for Thank You Day said: “Coventry Cathedral is a place of special significance and being there with friends from all backgrounds was really inspiring. Faith communities have done so much during this past difficult year, we have lots of people to thank.”

At Bradshaw Manor Care Home in Wales, residents recorded videos with their personal thank you messages to family and friends. Emma Crompton, activities co-ordinator, said: “Residents took time this week to thank their loved ones and each other. We’ve learnt that by simply taking the time to thank someone, how much of a positive impact this can have.”

Volunteers in Goole helped clean up a green space which provided a sanctuary for people during lockdown, as a way of recognising the importance of environmental havens to people’s wellbeing.

Rebecca Watkins, from Clean Goole Campaign Group, said: “It’s been a lifesaver in lockdown for many people to be able to walk out of the town centre and get a bit of breathing space and fresh air.”

Virgin Media O2 is also supporting Together Coalition’s ‘Community Connectors’ initiative by investing in 10 communities across the UK, to better understand how hyper-local funding can support community connection in areas of lower social capital and supercharge local charities and groups that champion and celebrate spirit, belonging and togetherness across the UK.

We have been overwhelmed reading about how our communities are helping each other during these difficult times. We want YOU to share and shout about what you are doing for your neighbourhoods.

Send us your stories via this link.

As part of this support Virgin Media O2 launched a £500,000 ‘Together Fund’. Grants of £1,000 have been received by environmental and community belonging projects, inspiring people across the UK to get together and create positive change for the causes they care most about.

The Together Fund, distributed via the Neighbourly platform, forms part of Virgin Media O2’s support for the Together Coalition, which aims to bring people together to help build a kinder, closer and more connected society.

Originally Appeared Here