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Catch up with the latest news from Cavell Nurses' Trust or browse the archive of news below.

Cavell Awards 2017

On June 22nd, we held our 6th annual Cavell Awards ceremony, celebrating the best and brightest in UK nursing and midwifery talent. 

With 10 awards in total, our awards programme celebrates a wide range of nursing fields including nursing overseas, students, care for older people and army reserve nurses. 

There was also an award celebrating special achievement within nursing and we were proud to award this to Mandy Stevens, a senior mental health nurse, for using her own mental health crisis to encourage others to seek help.

Life was great for Mandy until in 2016, after almost 30 years working in mental health services, including as a director of nursing for two large mental health trusts, she experienced a crisis from the other side of the fence:

“I found myself suffering from a severe depression, which came from out of the blue and left me frightened, disabled, suicidal and incapacitated. I hid myself away, scared of my own shadow and I told very few people about what was happening to me. This is what mental illness has the power to do.”

10 days later Mandy was admitted to an in-patient unit. The journey that followed was tough, but as Mandy worked towards recovery with the support of her healthcare team, she resolved to share her experience in an effort to show that mental health difficulties can strike anyone at any time. Despite being severely depressed, due to Mandy’s clinical experience she knew she would make a full recovery:

“I chose to share my story on social media because I wanted people to see that even happy, confident, successful people are not immune to the effects of mental illness. I wanted other people to realise that mental ill health can strike any of us, without warning. It is nothing to be ashamed of, and the support that’s out there really can make a difference. The first step is to be brave and ask for help.”

The ceremony took place in front of a packed audience of nurses, midwives and healthcare leaders at the De Vere Grand Connaught Rooms in Central London.

Cavell Nurses' Trust Twitter was busy all evening with attendees, friends, family and colleagues following the action on #CavellAwards:

Cavell Nurses’ Trust Chairman Simon Knighton said: “The Cavell Nurses’ Trust Awards helps us be here for nurses and midwives, either by supporting them when they face hardship or by celebrating the amazing work that they do every day.

“We’d like to thank the generous organisations that sponsored our awards and lent their time and expertise to ensure the awards are a fitting tribute to the passion and commitment of all our finalists.”

The Cavell Nurses’ Trust awards are made possible by a number of sponsors that give their time and support to the scheme: NEXT PLC, The Belgian Embassy in the UK, NHS Professionals, NHS Improvement, Alexandra, National Garden Scheme, RCN Foundation, Queen Alexandra Royal Army Nursing Corps (QARANC), The UK Nursing and Midwifery Social Media Leaders, Mark Allen Group and International Medical Corps UK.

Winners on the night included:

Excellence in Care for Older People Team Award
Winner: The Beeches Care Management Team, Signature at The Beeches

Excellence in Care for Older People Individual Award
Winner: Geraldine Rodgers, BHR University Hospitals NHS Trust & NELFT NHS Foundation Trust

Chairman’s Award for International Impact
Joint Runners Up: Col Kevin Davies, University of South Wales and Major Debbie Grafton, 202 Field Hospital
Winner: Fiona Stephenson, Livability Spinal Injury Centre

Outstanding QARANC Reservist Clinical Professional Development Award
Runner Up: Capt Janet Jordan, 208 Field Hospital
Winner: Sgt Rebecca Warren, 202 Field Hospital

Jean Atkinson MBE Award for Outstanding Healthcare Assistant
Runner Up: Emma Gibney, Diana, Princess of Wales Hospital
Winner: Stephanie Morris, Ashworth Hospital

Special Achievement Award Presentation
Awarded to Mandy Stevens

Community Award
Runner Up: Freya Sewell, Edinburgh Napier University
Winner: Sabrina Ffrench, University of Wolverhampton

Outstanding Academic Achievement Award
Runner Up: Eleanor Cramer, Anglia Ruskin University
Winner: Marina Down, King's College London

Outstanding Student Midwife Award
Runner Up: Gemma Sidor, Liverpool John Moores University
Winner: Katharine Siobhan Pearson, King's College London

Outstanding Student Nurse Award
Runner Up: Kate Boulton, The University of Manchester
Winner: Sarah Tipping, University of Southampton

Edith Cavell Leadership Award
Highly Commended Certificate: Kim Howson, University of East Anglia
Runner Up: Georgina Ledwith, Buckinghamshire New University
Winner: Lily Parham, King's College London

BCU raise £200

Tasty sale raises £200 for struggling nurses!

Staff and students at Birmingham City University (BCU) have raised £200 from a cake sale in support of UK nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants to celebrate International Nurses’ Day on May 12th. The annual awareness day is a time when people all around the world recognise and give thanks for the vital work that nurses do every day.

Determined to give something back to these unsung heroes, cake sale organiser and Senior Lecturer at the School of Nursing and Midwifery at BCU Ann-Marie Dodson was inspired to raise money for Cavell Nurses’ Trust, the national charity that helps transform nurses’ lives when they are suffering personal or financial hardship due to illness, disability, older age and domestic abuse.

Ann-Marie said:

“The staff and students had such fun baking, selling and eating the cakes! We were thrilled to have raised such a good amount of money. I’m passionate about nursing and supporting nursing professionals in any way I can so I’m pleased that this money will go to Cavell Nurses’ Trust to help a nurse who is suffering.”

Research carried out by Cavell Nurses’ Trust in 2016 shows that nurses in the UK are twice as likely as the general public to suffer financial hardship, and three times as likely to suffer domestic abuse.

John Orchard, Chief Executive of Cavell Nurses’ Trust, explains:

“At some point in our lives we all benefit from the care and compassion of a nurse. But sometimes, nurses need help too. Last year we saw a 36% rise in demand for our services and there’s no sign of that slowing down. We’re determined to help everyone who contacts us to get back on their feet in times of crisis, which is why we’re always delighted when people choose to help us be here for nurses by organizing their own fundraising activity.”

Click below for more information about Cavell Nurses’ Trust and for some inspirational ideas to get your own fundraising started.


Cavell News - February 2017

Financial toll for nurses living with cancer

Recent research from Macmillan Cancer Support shows in the last year over a third of people diagnosed with cancer had no idea the disease would affect them financially. The findings also showed that the cost of cancer is on average £570 per month more for 80% of cancer patients.

In 2016, 14% of the nursing professionals we helped contacted us because of the increased cost of living with cancer. It’s trying to find extra money for new clothing due to weight-loss from cancer treatment, higher heating bills as patients feel the cold more and spend more time at home and increased travel costs for attending regular hospital consultations. It all adds up and is compounded by nurses reducing their hours or stopping work altogether if they are too ill to work.

Cavell Nurses’ Trust works with Macmillan to identify nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants affected by cancer, who can benefit from support. If you know someone who needs help, put them in touch here or call 01527 595 999.

A new partnership!

We're excited to have the staff at Alexandra, a leading workwear and nurses' uniform supplier, on board and keen to raise funds to support UK nurses. They have set a target of £10,000 and plan to hit this with a variety of events scheduled throughout 2017. Click here to read more

We rely on our generous supporters and fantastic fundraisers – individuals, community groups and organisations – to fund the help we give to nurses suffering hardship.

So get your friends and colleagues involved today! Watch this for inspiration...

Be #HereForNurses

Give in memory

The inquest into the death of nurse Amin Abdullah was held earlier this month. Tragically, Amin committed suicide a year ago after being dismissed from his role as a charge nurse. His mental health deteriorated while he waited for his appeal and unfortunately he took his own life just days before it was due to take place.

Cavell Nurses' Trust was incredibly honoured to have been chosen by Amin’s partner Terry and his loved ones to benefit from donations left in Amin's memory. The money will be used to provide help and support to nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants who are in crisis.

Anyone wishing to give in Amin's memory, please click here

Not long left!

Do you know a nurse, midwife or healthcare assistant - student or qualified - that deserves to be celebrated? The 2017 Cavell Awards take place on 22nd June where we celebrate and recognise outstanding contributions to nursing and midwifery.

So we're looking for entrants to a number of student and qualified awards. For student applications, the deadline is midnight on 1st March and for qualified nurse applications you've got until 31st March.

Find out more, click here

Please get in touch! We'd love to know what you think of the news we bring you and thank you for being #HereForNurses.


Alexandra staff lend support

At Cavell Nurses’ Trust we are delighted to announce that leading workwear and uniform supplier, Alexandra, has agreed to lend their support in 2017 to boost funding to reach out to more nursing professionals in need.

Alexandra has been trading since 1854 and like Cavell Nurses’ Trust, they share a rich nursing heritage and their staff are keen to support nurses that are suffering hardship. With a series of fundraising events and initiatives taking place in 2017, including supporting International Nurses’ Day on 12th May, the staff at Alexandra have set a fundraising target of £10,000.

Martin Lyne, Managing Director of Alexandra said

“This partnership with Cavell Nurses’ Trust is so important to us here at Alexandra, as we care passionately about helping nurses out of hardship. The staff at Alexandra are all really excited to be raising money for this fantastic cause and having fun while they do it!”

Amongst the staff at Alexandra, based in Bristol, are keen cyclists, runners and bakers and Cavell Nurses’ Trust hopes that it can inspire team members to pull on their trainers, grab their bikes and rattle their cake tins to raise money to support nurses. In addition, with a vast database of customers and equal numbers accessing their fully transactional website, Alexandra have plans afoot to involve their customers in the fundraising activity through the year.

Jorj Jarvie, Director of Fundraising at Cavell Nurses' Trust said

“We are so delighted that the staff at Alexandra are committed to be here for nurses and we’re looking forward to supporting them in their efforts. Every pound they raise will be vital in providing much needed support, for example, to a nurse struggling to pay for transport to attend appointments for cancer treatment or a midwife trying to keep a home warm this winter for her family.”

If your organisation would like to find out how they can support UK nurses please contact the Cavell Nurses' Trust Fundraising team


Valuing our nurses

"As the charity that gives money and support to nursing professionals in the UK who are facing financial hardship, Cavell Nurses’ Trust welcomes the debate on how we value our nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants (HCAs).

"Whilst salaries are important to all our lives, there are many reasons why nurses, midwives and HCAs suffer hardship and get in touch with Cavell Nurses’ Trust. Our recent survey of 2,200 nursing professionals shows that as well as being twice as likely as the general public to suffer financial hardship, nurses are three times more likely to face domestic abuse.

"Also, 1 in 5 nursing professionals say they have a physical or mental health condition that is expected to last a year or more.

"We want to see a society that cares for the people that cares for it. Cavell Nurses’ Trust offers ways that the public, community groups and companies can value nurses and show they really care.

"And with a 36% rise in enquiries for help in the last year we feel that now is the time for action."

John Orchard - Chief Executive, Cavell Nurses' Trust


Cavell News - January 2017

In 2016, Cavell Nurses' Trust received 36% more enquiries for help than the previous year.

There's lots of reasons why nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants contact us for support - illness, older age, domestic abuse, disability - but we always aim to turn around applications quickly, in many cases getting these vital nursing professionals back to work - caring for us!

Lottery winners! - Thank you to the players

We are delighted to report that Cavell Nurses' Trust received more than £32,500 last year in donations from the generous people who played the Health Service Discounts Lottery. And with our 'matched fund', set up after a generous donation from the Perseverance Trust in 2015, that money has been DOUBLED to £65,000.

This vital cash means we can quickly get much needed funds to nurses suffering hardship, like

  • repairing a nurse's faulty boiler in the dead of winter, ensuring her family keep warm
  • funding travel costs for a midwife attending hospital for cancer treatment
  • providing mobility aids to ensure a disabled healthcare assistant can get out and about to see family and friends

Have you played the Lottery yet? It is drawn every week with an average prize of around £600. Find out how to register and play... click HERE

Making a real difference

We always keep in touch with the people we've helped to find out how your support has made a difference to their lives. And we're happy to tell you that it is significant...

  • 89% of the people supported in 2016 stayed in, or returned to work
  • 83% said our support positively affected their physical health, with 94% saying their mental health was positively affected too

We're so proud that the help nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants receive makes such an impact on their lives. But we need your help! 

What can you do to help in 2017?

Can you be #HereForNurses this year? There are so many ways you, your friends and family can have fun and get involved supporting UK nurses suffering hardship.

Run, bike, bake, walk, climb, jump - there's something for everyone to do. Have a look at what some of our fabulous fundraisers got up to in 2016...

Whatever you do be #HereForNurses


Let's celebrate nurses!

The 2017 Cavell Awards looks to celebrate and recognise the outstanding contribution that nurses and midwives make to all our lives. With the Cavell Awards ceremony in June this year, we are currently looking for student nurses and midwives as well as qualified nursing professionals to enter a variety of categories.

There's a chance to win a share of over £10,000 in travel placement funding and computer technology.

So are you, or do you know, a student or qualified nurse or midwife? If so, find out more about the Cavell Awards 2017 HERE

Cavell News - December 2016

By the end of 2016, we will have received 1,900 enquiries for help.

That's 36% more than last year.

With your help, we have reached more nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants who are suffering hardship.

With your generosity we've been able to support them, getting money to these amazing nursing professionals and lifting them out of crisis.

Thank you. And in 2017 we want to help more people - and we need your help!


We've had a brilliant response to our research into hardship amongst nurses with hundreds of people reading the survey report and requesting an Action Pack.

Thank you if you've had a chance to get involved - could you share this with friends and colleagues and spread the word on how they can get involved too? 

If you haven't yet read the report - find out more, click below...

Become a Cavell Angel

Our research has shown that nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants are twice as likely than the public to suffer financial hardship. This is appalling.

So in the run up to Christmas, we're asking people to consider donating a few pounds to help nursing professionals who are struggling.

  • £5 helps a nurse suffering cancer travel to get treatment
  • £15 helps to cover one week's electricity bill for a retired nurse
  • £50 helps provide clothes for a nurse who's lost weight after serious illness

Everyone that donates to Cavell Nurses' Trust before Christmas receives an exclusive Cavell Angel badge. To donate, click below...


We're really looking forward to 2017 and hope you will be a part of the support team that helps Cavell Nurses' Trust provide vital funds and help to nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants who need it. 

There are so many reasons people contact us for help - illness, disability, older age, domestic abuse - and we'll all at some point in our lives meet a nurse.

If you believe we should be here for nurses, have a look at all the ways you could get involved.


Have a merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all the Cavell team!

Chief Executive's blog

The report is live!

by John Orchard, Chief Executive, Cavell Nurses' Trust

I’m plonked on a train to London as I write this. I’m traveling to the Nursing Times Awards and we’re very excited to be the charity being supported with donations at the event. 

It’s been fascinating to share in the response to “Skint, shaken yet still caring, but who is caring for our nurses?”, a report into the hardship nurses in the UK are facing, day in, day out.

The report shows that not only are nurses twice as likely to suffer financial hardship, but are three times more likely to face domestic abuse than the public.

Briefly, I need to say a big thank you to the team at Cavell Nurses’ Trust, including our wonderful trustees and patrons. They are an incredibly dedicated, thoughtful, kind and motivated bunch.

Shocked, sad, appalled

These words have come up again and again following the release of the report.

Motivated to act

It’s our job to turn those emotions into positive change. Whether we’re talking about the feelings of people who turn to Cavell Nurses’ Trust for help in a crisis, or people reacting to the report.

So it’s heartening to see that people are taking action. On the day of the launch, we were contacted by several companies, within the first couple of hours, who wanted to get involved with fundraising and awareness raising.

Hundreds of people have now downloaded the report, got action packs and generally got stuck in. Well done to everyone that's taken action.

We’re incredibly grateful because, if nothing else, “Skint, Shaken yet still caring.” revealed the scale of the problem Cavell Nurses’ Trust faces. We can do something significant about the hardship nurses are facing, but only together.

So. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

One big question

For me this all comes down to one, pretty big question. What kind of society do we want to live in? If we want to live in a society which cares for the people who care for us, then supporting Cavell Nurses’ Trust is a way to make that happen.


Growing support for nurses in need

A nurses’ charity has teamed up with The National Gardens Scheme (NGS) to provide £50,000 to support nurses suffering hardship and to celebrate young nursing talent in the UK.

Cavell Nurses’ Trust is a national charity that gives money and support to nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants experiencing financial or personal hardship, often because of illness, domestic abuse, disability, working poverty and older age and has been able to use £25,000 of the donation from the NGS to help nurses like Michelle Quested.

Michelle, a neonatal cardiac nurse from Birmingham Children’s Hospital, suffered a back injury a few years ago that left her unable to walk, temporarily ending her nursing career.

Despite being confined to a wheelchair, she was determined to get back to nursing and had to overcome many obstacles. Cavell Nurses’ Trust was able to provide funding that meant Michelle’s manual wheelchair could be converted to an electric one, allowing her to return to the job that she is so dedicated to. Michelle says,

“The help I have received from Cavell Nurses’ Trust has been life changing. I’m a nurse through and through, it’s in my soul. I can’t imagine doing anything else.”

Financial support, like the NGS donation, ensures that nurses like Michelle can be supported back to work and prevent others from facing hardship. John Orchard, Chief Executive of Cavell Nurses’ Trust said, “We are extremely grateful to the NGS as generous donations like these provide vital support for nurses in difficulty. We hope to help at least 1,600 people this year so this support is crucial.”

The NGS also supports the annual Cavell Awards, a scheme that recognises and celebrates young nursing talent. The funding ensures that outstanding student nurses and midwives have the chance to further their learning by undertaking a work placement in their final year at university.

Martin McMillan, Chairman of the National Gardens Scheme said: “I am thrilled that the NGS is able to support nurses like Michelle, who are at the heart of our charities heritage, and show our continued support through the annual awards.”

Find out more about the National Gardens Scheme HERE

Watch Michelle's story here...

Michelle's story

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Joan's Run4Cavell

Joan became a nurse “by mistake” after originally wanting to be a physiotherapist. Growing up in Spain watching his beloved Barcelona football team, he was always interested in the physio that would run onto the pitch and get players back on their feet. He didn’t get the grades needed to study to be a physio but chose nursing instead.

During his twenty year nursing career, Joan (pronounced ‘Jo-anne’) has moved to the UK and worked in A&E, Intensive Care and Community Nursing and currently works as Clinical Lead for a clinical commissioning group, implementing technology to improve how patients manage their conditions and communicate with their GPs.

Joan's Run4Cavell

He’s always had boundless energy and has used this to great effect recently to support his nursing colleagues. On 29th May Joan ran the Liverpool Rock’n’Roll Marathon, raising money for Cavell Nurses’ Trust, supporting nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants who are suffering hardship.

So why is he so committed to help his fellow nurses? A few years ago after his marriage ended Joan was struggling to juggle his finances, having to pay for extra rent on his new accommodation.

“I know how stressful it is to have to choose between paying the electricity bill, or buying food today. Then you get a letter from the landlord to say rent is due, it’s very easy to get into debt problems.”

Despite working overtime to try and cope, Joan’s situation didn’t improve. So he turned to a charitable organisation set up to help nurses, like Cavell Nurses’ Trust, called the RCN Foundation. They helped pay his rent arrears and got him back on his feet and he was so grateful.

“I said one day that I would give back to a charity that helped nurses, so I have chosen Cavell Nurses’ Trust.”

Joan named his marathon a 'Tweetathon' as he tweeted a message every mile, getting sponsorship for each mile and raising awareness about nurses suffering hardship.

He has raised a huge sum of £3,680 for nurses in need, an amazing effort!

“It’s been incredible, people are so generous. I have a lot of followers on Twitter, 19 thousand at the moment, so it made sense that I include social media in my marathon challenge. I was keen to make as much noise as possible for Cavell Nurses’ Trust.”

If you want to donate to Joan's JustGiving page click here 

Click here to contact Cavell Nurses' Trust