Since the beginning of lockdown, an estimated 43 million people across the UK reveal they have done something kind to help others, according to research carried out by the British Red Cross.
To say thank you to this incredible number of people, the British Red Cross has taken over the iconic Piccadilly Circus billboard, illuminating the West End of London.
There has been an outpouring of kindness across the UK; with almost 80,000 people signing up to volunteer with the British Red Cross and supporting some of the most vulnerable people during the crisis. Millions more have been performing incredible acts of kindness in their communities.
Some of these wonderful actions include handwritten letters to friends and family, providing icing sugar and flour to a neighbour to make a birthday cake, and children drawing pictures to stick to their wheelie bins to cheer up refuse collectors. Someone even went through their entire address book and called anyone they thought could be lonely.
Recently, British Red Cross volunteer, Emmanuel Cudjoe from Bromley, London (pictured) has delivered vital supplies of food and essentials to the homes of vulnerable refugees in Hackney.
In front of the Piccadilly lights, Emmanuel explains why he’s been inspired to volunteer and help in these unprecedented times, delivering food, medicine and supporting refugees facing extreme poverty:“I’m volunteering whenever I can really – evenings, weekends and early mornings. There’s no point waiting until after Covid-19 and thinking ‘oh I could have done more’ when it’s too late. There are people out there who are really struggling – people have told me they can’t access the basic supplies they need to stay alive and that’s absolutely devastating. It’s important that we come together to show kindness, because I’ve seen how small actions can make a big impact on the lives of so many people.”
Zoë Abrams, executive director at the British Red Cross, said: “We want to say thank you to every single person who has shown kindness during this difficult time. We hope to inspire others across the UK to thank the people in their lives, too. Because whilst this virus may keep us apart, kindness will keep us together.
“For 150 years, the British Red Cross has helped the nation through its darkest days and coronavirus is no exception. We are focussed on supporting the most vulnerable people through this crisis by delivering food and medicine, making sure refugees and people seeking asylum are safe, and supporting the NHS to get patients home from hospital. It’s thanks to the extraordinary kindness of our volunteers, supporters and partners that we have been able to continue our vital work during this time.”
The charity is calling on the public to send their own message of thanks to someone who has shown kindness to them, either by picking up the phone, or sending a message on social media #PowerOfKindness.
The advertising space was kindly donated to the British Red Cross.
Piccadilly Lights is operated by Ocean on behalf of Landsec.
Ocean Outdoor has also donated OOH space to the campaign across its wider UK portfolio.
To give help or to get help go to the red cross website.