As we get closer to Christmas and the New Year holidays, our thoughts tend to drift towards the time we will spend with friends and family. In an increasingly busy world, the festive period still offers some respite for those of us who need to press pause, draw breath and recharge our batteries. We enjoy the rest, the time spent with those we love and the opportunity to eat, drink and occasionally be merry! So as we head towards this point in the year, it is a good time to think about those less fortunate than us and for whom the festive period represents increased hours and very often increased demand for service.
Our police, fire and ambulance officers will continue to operate 24/7 throughout the festive period. Many will have little time off and most will have their family plans disrupted at some point over the holidays. But even before we reach Christmas Day, most of us will enjoy a Christmas night out with colleagues. As we celebrate, we should spare a thought for our emergency responders who will be out there as usual making sure we are safe, that our villages, towns and cities are protected, that we get to enjoy our parties in the knowledge that we are being watched over by the best emergency services in the world.
So, here at APD we have an idea for how we can show our gratitude to our emergency responders over the festive period. It does not involve a grand plan that has been well resourced and taken months to deliver. In fact, it is a rather simple notion but one that is genuine, sincere, heartfelt and is as follows. As we go about our business over the next 4 weeks or so, whether we are on our own or with friends, family or colleagues, leaving home, heading to work, going on a night out or returning home – when we see any of our police, fire or ambulance officers we should say thank you for all that they do. Thank them for their service and commitment, for keeping us safe, for protecting us, caring for us and for making sure that we get to enjoy that well earned rest with our friends and families at this special time of year.
Our emergency services will not seek this thanks from you. Indeed some of them might seem surprised that you offer it. That is because when you serve you do not do it for thanks or for reward – you do it because you have a strong sense of public duty, public service and are committed to keeping people safe 24/7/365. But that comes at a cost! You don’t get to spend the same amount of time with your friends and family and your Christmas dinner may just end up in the microwave, or even worse, the dog, depending upon the call you just responded to. So, with that in mind, a polite heartfelt thank you to our emergency responders in the coming weeks is a great way to thank the men and women who serve and to acknowledge their sacrifice.