Millwall and Charlton footballers spread festive cheer to hospital patients
Football stars from Millwall Football Club and Charlton Athletic Football Club visited University Hospital Lewisham (UHL) and Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) last week, to pass on Christmas cheer and deliver gifts to sick babies, children and patients with cancer.
Players and club staff brought sacks of presents for an afternoon playing Santa. First stop for both teams was the children’s wards, where many young patients will be spending Christmas.
Taking time out of their busy training schedules, the players met adult patients in the Macmillan Brook Unit at QEH and Suite 8 at UHL which both specialise in cancer care.
A young patient at University Hospital Lewisham, Romilade Amid said: “I can’t believe I just met the Millwall Football Team. I have never met footballers before, so this is amazing.”
Millwall defender Murray Wallace explained: “After a long gap in visits because of COVID, it was so nice to get back to University Hospital Lewisham to spread a bit of festive cheer. We appreciate just how difficult it must be to be in hospital at this time, so we hope that bringing gifts for the young patients provided a bit of relief. We all look forward to visiting and we thank all the doctors, nurses and staff for everything they do day-in, day-out.”
Sharon Justice, Play Specialist at UHL commented: “The patients love meeting the Millwall players and staff. They’re really generous with their time and gifts, and pose for lots of photos. They speak to everyone and we very much appreciate that.”
Sian Rogers, goalkeeper at Charlton Athletic Women said: “As well as bringing presents to the children, we came to Queen Elizabeth Hospital to give chocolates to the hardworking staff. Engagement with our local community is massively important for us. So it was great to spread some Christmas cheer to everyone and see lots of smiles.”
Carol Sullivan-Wallace, Play Specialist, QEH added: "We would like to send our very special thanks to the wonderful women’s football team at Charlton Athletic for visiting. It was a great delight to see the very many happy smiley faces of the children, families and staff."
Our Trust Charity is inviting local communities to make an online donation to buy gifts for patients who are in University Hospital Lewisham and Queen Elizabeth Hospital this Christmas. Donations will be used to buy:
- New toys for young patients who are too ill to go home for the festive break and
- Winter clothing for vulnerable patients whose relatives cannot bring in warm clothes for when they go home.
Donations to our Trust Charity Christmas Appeal can be made via JustGiving page: Christmas Appeal 2022 - JustGiving
You can also donate new toys in the original packaging such as baby toys, educational toys, arts and crafts sets, board games and toiletries gift sets. The Trust charity asks that you do not wrap your gifts and are unable to accept cuddly toys.
Toys can be dropped off at University Hospital Lewisham and Queen Elizabeth Hospital’s main reception, between 10am and 3pm each day until 22 December.