At H4H, we say ‘it's about the blokes’ – the men and women whose lives have been affected by their service. They don’t consider themselves to be heroes but they all took the decision to join the Armed Forces and in doing so agreed to risk all on our behalf. That’s extraordinary, it’s unique and we think it’s heroic. No other job asks its employees to risk life and limb and I for one am deeply grateful to them all. I know you are as well.
This week of all weeks has helped remind us why we support ‘the blokes’ through H4H. Emma and I watched the BBC documentary of the British Team preparing for the Invictus Games, the programme on Gareth Malone’s choir and, now we are out in Orlando, watching our UK Team achieve the extraordinary. We feel so ridiculously proud of the individuals who have opened up their hopes and fears to us and are pushing themselves to their limits on the sports field to inspire others.
Recruiting, selecting and training the teams has taken a huge effort from the unsung heroes of Team H4H – our staff, our partners and the volunteers who give up so much of their time to help put smiles back on faces. You are enormously appreciated. It was a very moving moment when Gareth asked his choir to perform in front of the Tedworth House staff. There were huge grins and a few tears of pride. Our people are very special, many have served and all are determined to do their best to support 'the blokes’. This is so much more than just a job and I am deeply grateful to you all.
Last week we met up with teams from ASDA and Debenhams, both hugely valued partners in this great effort. Decent people who are prepared to go the extra mile to help others in addition to their day job; people that we could not do without. To watch the ASDA team listen to Rob Cromey-Hawke, one of the H4H Band of Brothers, tell his story was proof, if any were needed, of their deep rooted desire to play their part. Thank you to all those who help support H4H and for enabling us to help others.
'It’s about the blokes’; that’s why we exist as an organisation and we must always ensure that focus remains on our beneficiaries. But we don’t do this on our own. We are one team, united behind a very special cause – a main effort of support. That focus must remain as sharp and as clear as we go forward. We will widen our support to those with hidden wounds, we will ensure that our outreach teams get to those who can’t easily travel to us, we will build on the solid foundation that we have established, we will further improve our partnerships and what we can offer to those who so deserve our support.
Recovery is complex and unending, there is no single solution or a pill that will make these lives whole again, but we must do what we can and we must aim for best. Those at the Invictus Games would not expect anything less.
Thank you all for what you do and let’s go UK Team!
Onwards and Upwards!