It has been a heart-lifting moment among the fear of the coronavirus pandemic – the inspirational story of the army veteran, who turns 100 years old on Thursday, walking 100 lengths of his garden to raise almost £30m for the NHS.
Captain Tom Moore completed the last of the 25-metre laps early on Thursday morning, while his fundraising total continues to rocket and his place in the nation’s affections soars. The veteran said he would carry on walking lengths as donations continue to be made to his JustGiving page.
But what will happen to the phenomenal sum of money he has raised?
We know that the millions will be donated to NHS Charities Together.
The charity, which is an umbrella body for NHS charities nationwide, has set the ambitious target of raising £100m for NHS workers through its NHS Charities Covid-19 Appeal.
Before its fundraising appeal began on March 23, NHS Charities Together was not a household name, but within weeks it has raised a huge amount of money.
Here’s what we know about the charity and how the appeal funds will be spent.
What is NHS Charities Together?
NHS Charities Together is the official charity partner of the NHS nationally.
It holds a licence from the health secretary to use the NHS brand, and to fundraise for NHS charitable funds in the UK. It is the only national charity able to do this.
The charity acts as an umbrella organisation for the other 230 NHS charities.
It is a small organisation that, as of last week, had only five staff – but has despite its size managed to channel the outpouring of public goodwill for the NHS into a formidable fundraising operation.
According to Charity Commission records, NHS Charities Together was newly registered as a charity on November 25, 2019, but it formerly operated as the Association of NHS Charities with a rather more modest income of £271,262 in 2018.
What will the money be used for?
NHS charities will be the ultimate beneficiaries of money donated to the Covid-19 appeal, and it will support NHS staff and patients.
But charity money does not replace core government funding and cannot be used to buy frontline NHS equipment, such as ventilators, personal protective equipment or coronavirus testing.
NHS Charities Together says it is working with trustees, NHS charities, and the fund management company CCLA to set up an emergency grants fund.
The fund will do three things.
Firstly, it will quickly hand out money to be spent on enhancing the well-being of NHS staff, volunteers and patients by paying for things like well-being packs, meal deliveries, wash kits and furniture for rest rooms.
Money will also be available to support patients’ mental health by providing electronic devices so they can talk to family and friends.
Secondly, the charity says it has ring-fenced funds to be spent after the coronavirus crisis on supporting the mental health and recovery of NHS staff and volunteers.
And, thirdly, money will also go to bolstering care and hospice services in the community so more patients can leave hospital quickly (and stay out of it), reducing the pressure on inpatient beds.
The charity’s chief executive Ellie Orton told BBC One that the millions raised by Captain Tom Moore would be used to support these efforts.
How much has been raised?
As of April 16, the NHS Charities Together appeal has raised £27,154,185 separately from the now £30m also raised by Captain Tom Moore.
The £27m total includes two multi-million donations made in the first weeks of the campaign, which launched on March 23.
One of these for £10m came from the currency trading company XTX Markets, received on the first day and swiftly followed by £5m from the Rausing Family, linked to the famous TetraPak founder, later that week.
The charity says there has been amazing support from the public, companies, high net worth individuals and celebrities so far, who are keen to show their support to the NHS.
Captain Tom Moore has a separate fundraising page on the site JustGiving where the £30m to support his charity walk has been donated.
How quickly will the money get to NHS workers?
HuffPost UK asked NHS Charities Together how quickly money from the NHS Charities Covid-19 Appeal will be spent.
The charity said its small team had been inundated with inquiries and it was not possible to get back to us.
However, it has provided examples of requests it has received from NHS charities for money, although these are not directly linked to the funds raised by Captain Tom Moore.
Which NHS charities have applied for grants?
The Oxford University NHS Foundation Trust, which includes the John Radcliffe Hospital, a national hub to receive critically ill Covid-19 patients transferred from other hospitals, will benefit from a grant.
As the coronavirus crisis began to unfold, the hospital’s charity contacted frontline staff asking what help they needed and saw requests come in for hot food, drinks, snacks and treats for staff too busy to get their own food.
With funds from the appeal, staff are now receiving practical help such as hot food, water, high energy snacks, cakes, chocolates, hand and face creams, care kits and recipe boxes to take home.
The charity says a large number of frontline staff are having to stay in local hotels either to protect their own families or because a family member is in self-nhs isolation.
So far, the charity has delivered 250 care packages that include food and toiletries, to these staff.
The West Herts Hospitals Charity has also applied for money.
Like all hospitals, its sites are closed to visitors following Covid-19 guidelines, which it says has had a massive knock-on impact on both patients’ and staff’s health and wellbeing.
The charity says some patients have no way to communicate with relatives but having iPads to make FaceTime and Skype calls would help them stay in contact and in some cases say their final goodbyes.
The iPads will also be used for activities such as games and audiobooks, which will help patients’ mental health and wellbeing, and in turn support staff who are sat in isolation with them.
University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust will also benefit from money.
The trust has more than 12,000 staff and 700-plus volunteers working across two sites at Royal Stoke University Hospital in Stoke-on-Trent and County Hospital in Stafford.
The UHNM Charity serves both hospitals and is keen to support all staff and volunteers during the coronavirus crisis through its Share to Care project, which will provide care packs for staff and volunteers in 100 departments.
The packs will include food and wash kits and other items to help reduce stress and boost morale. UHNM Charity has requested £5,000 towards the cost of sourcing the care boxes.
How is money being donated to the appeal?
NHS Charities Together is using the fundraising platforms Virgin Money Giving, JustGiving, and Facebook to host its appeal.
Virgin Money Giving says it is acting as a “central hub” so the charity can track the amount raised through all donation sources.
The not-for-profit site charges a 2% platform fee, which donors have the option to cover, and a 2.5% processing fee to cover its costs for processing debt and credit card payments.
Virgin Money Giving said it had generated fees of about £38,000 on the £2.24m donated directly to NHS Charities Together through the site as of last week.
But as many donors have chosen to cover this cost, Virgin Money Giving said its fees have actually been £9,900.
Virgin Money CEO David Duffy has also announced he is giving up a proportion of his salary to cover Virgin Money Giving’s fees for the NHS Charities Together campaign on at least the next £2m of donations.
A spokesperson said: “We don’t make any money from people’s generosity, and unlike other fundraising websites our low fees only cover our operating costs.”
HuffPost UK also asked JustGiving what charges were in place for the NHS Charities Together appeal and Captain Tom Moore’s fundraiser.
The site charges a 1.9% processing fee, meaning it will have taken £32,480 on the £1,709,518 of donations to NHS Charities Together as of April 8.
JustGiving said the processing fee is used to cover costs such as fraud checks and credit card charges.
The site told HuffPost UK charities would usually pay an annual subscription fee, but this has been waived for NHS Charities Together.
The company, which is owned by American tech firm Blackbaud, also confirmed it will take the 1.9% processing fee on money raised by Captain Tom Moore, which is equivalent to £570,000 on the £30m raised so far.
To celebrate the completion of Captain Tom’s challenge, Blackbaud has donated £100,000 to NHS Charities Together through the army veteran’s campaign.
This is the largest donation JustGiving has ever made. Captain Tom’s appeal has also broken site records and is the largest total ever raised on JustGiving.
A JustGiving spokesperson said: “97 percent of all funds raised by Captain Tom will go directly to NHS Charities Together, as with any other charity fundraiser on JustGiving.”
Facebook says it charges 0% fees to non-profits and they get 100% of donations. As of April 16 £16,825 had been donated via the site.
If you would like to donate to the NHS appeal