Former Bolton Wanderers and England striker Kevin Davies has joined to fight against the coronavirus by volunteering with the NHS.
The ex-footballer explained in a diary with The Athletic, that when the government launched an appeal for 250,000 volunteers to help the NHS, he didn't have a second thought.
It’s time for me, for us, to help them, to try and ease the burden a little bit. It just felt like the natural thing to do. And I suppose with the position I’m in, it’s also about trying to raise awareness.
Davies expressed his gratitude to the NHS, stating that despite his status and income as a footballer, he never took out private health insurance. Instead, whenever there was a health emergency in his family, he called on the health service.
The NHS looked after Davies' parents in their final days, with both his mother and father succumbing to cancer within three months of each other.
Davies' explains that he wishes he was there for his mother in her final hours, rather than at a Bolton Wanderers community fundraiser. However, rather than rue it, he wants to lend a helping hand to the people that were there for his mother in her moment of need.
The NHS, the doctors, the nurses, the specialists, the consultants, the surgeons and all the rest of them were there for my parents — treating them and nursing them and caring for them — just as they have been there throughout my life...
They looked after my parents, right until the end.
Davies, in his diary, also talks about coming to terms with the deaths of his parents several years later, having taken part in the Great North Run for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation, a cancer charity that operates through the NHS.
In the aftermath of the run, Davies sat on the coastline and bawled.
It allowed me to have a quiet moment by myself and actually think about what happened to my parents...
I sat there, coming to terms with my own physical and mental exhaustion, with all those feelings whirring around inside me. I just felt overwhelmed with gratitude that they were healthy. It was very emotional.
You can tell that Davies is extremely grateful for the hard-work which underlies the NHS. He doesn't know what he'll be tasked with, but he'll be on-hand for whatever is needed.
Maybe it will be phone calls, ringing people up and seeing whether they need anything, or going to a hospital and helping with some admin. Who knows. But the app is turned on and I’m ready, just like the NHS has always been ready for us.
They’ve been fantastic to me and my family over the years. It’s time to give a little back.
If you're in the UK and you're looking for more information about how to volunteer for the NHS, visit www.goodsamapp.org/NHS