OUR JABS Army numbers swelled to an incredible 35,000 last night as yet more firms backed our appeal.
Fashion giant New Look, airline Virgin Atlantic and Stansted’s owner Manchester Airports Group are some of the latest leading firms to back The Sun’s Jabs Army campaign by urging staff to volunteer.
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Sign up at nhsvolunteerresponders.org.uk
New Look, which has around 10,000 employees, said yesterday that it was “delighted” to back the Jabs Army campaign and will be encouraging colleagues to take part in the vaccination rollout.
Nigel Oddy, CEO of New Look, said: “We are delighted to support The Sun’s Jabs Army campaign.
“We want to do our bit in the fight against the virus through this huge vaccination effort by giving back to the communities where we trade and helping to return the country to normality as quickly as possible.”
Virgin Atlantic, which has 6,500 staff, is also behind the effort to immunise the nation.
It is putting forward its “highly skilled people” to act as Steward Volunteers to help with the safe and smooth running of NHS vaccination centres.
Corneel Koster, chief customer and operating officer at Virgin Atlantic said: “We are very proud of our highly skilled people at Virgin Atlantic and since the beginning of the crisis we have received an amazing response with hundreds keen to sign up and support the NHS and frontline emergency services.
“The Steward Volunteers play an integral role in the smooth running of the vaccination centres and are just one of the roles our people are putting themselves forward for alongside administering the vaccine and patient welfare.”
Their backing came as the number of Sun readers signing up reached 35,000.
Yesterday Health Minister Edward Argar told MPs The Sun’s campaign showed the best of Britain.
He said: “The Sun is doing its bit to encourage people to sign up, encourage people to volunteer and I believe they’ve got over 30,000 people who have now signed up.
“All of this is a reflection of the innate strength of community in this country when something needs to be done, and the people of this country step up and do their bit.”
Dreams, the bed and mattress retailer with 2,150 employees, is also supporting Jabs Army.
'PROUD TO SUPPORT THIS CAMPAIGN'
Mike Logue, CEO of Dreams said: “Throughout the pandemic we’ve been doing as much as we can to support the national effort – from providing beds to women’s refuges, to offering mattresses to the Nightingale hospitals.
“We’re proud to support this campaign and are encouraging our colleagues to volunteer so as many people as possible can get vaccinated, quickly."
Fast growing Octopus Energy is encouraging its 1,000 workers to volunteer.
The firms’ support, along with that of other companies such as BT, Sky, Amazon, British Airways, easyJet, John Lewis, and Virgin Media means that around million workers are available for the Jabs Army.
As well as urging staff to volunteer, Manchester Airports Group – owner of London Stansted, Manchester and East Midlands Airports – is offering space for volunteer training and vaccination centres and hopes to have Brits flying again soon.
Tim Hawkins, Chief of Staff at Manchester Airports Group commented: “Hats off to The Sun for this campaign. The sooner people get their vaccine, the sooner we can beat the virus and get Britain flying again – whether to see someone they’ve not seen for months or to enjoy a well-earned break.
“As only essential travel is happening now, and our terminals are very quiet, we’re encouraging all our colleagues to volunteer now to join The Sun’s Jabs Army and help make the vaccination programme a success.”
Financier and philanthropist Guy Hands, who now owns Hand Picked hotels with wife Julia, is offering his 16 hotels as vaccination sites.
They will provide free food and drink for volunteers on the premises.
The couple said “Throughout this crisis it is local communities that have come together in unprecedented ways to aid the tackling of this terrible virus.
How to sign up
VOLUNTEERS for the Jabs Army are being asked to first register online at nhsvolunteerresponders.org.uk
You will then receive an email with log-in details to sign up online.
Finally, you will be asked to download the GoodSAM app on a smartphone which will match you to a role in your area.
Services will be opening in the coming days and weeks, with different areas up and running at different times, so you might not be required on site for some weeks. Not everyone who signs up will need to be called upon.
You need to commit to only two six-hour shifts a month at a vaccination service, and no prior experience or qualifications are required.
You will work as part of a team that will include NHS staff and volunteers. The Royal Voluntary Service will conduct appropriate background checks.
Go to nhsvolunteerresponders.org.uk
"The Jabs Army campaign has done a fantastic job of rallying volunteers for the NHS to help with the vaccination effort.
"Our strongly held belief in community power is why we want to throw our support behind the campaign.
“We will be asking our fantastic staff if they are able to join the fight through volunteering at the centres that are set up in the hotel they would normally be working in.”
Volunteer at nhsvolunteerresponders.org.uk
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