A charity campaign is calling for people to forego cards and flowers for Valentine’s Day, and to instead raise money for the NHS.
Valentines For The NHS was set up by brand marketer Claire Ruddock and condemns the February 14 tradition as an “avalanche of advertiser propaganda nonsense”.
The campaign is asking people not to shell out on “cutesy cards” or “a vomit of naff red and pink hearts”, but instead donate money that can continue to help support NHS workers – who Ms Ruddock argues emulate the true meaning of love in “sacrificing themselves for the sake of others”.
“NHS staff are sacrificing so much to get us through this pandemic, risking their physical and mental health for us every day,” reads the JustGiving page.
“They have chosen us over themselves. We can choose them this February and make them our Valentines.”
Ms Ruddock set up the page in January after she had seen several news stories on the trauma NHS workers are experiencing amid the pandemic.
“It was on my mind a lot and I wanted to do something, even if it was just really little and local,” Ms Ruddock told the PA news agency.
So far, the Valentines For The NHS campaign has raised over £1,700 for NHS Charities Together, exceeding its original target of £1,402 – a homage to February 14.
Ms Ruddock says she hopes to have doubled this number by Valentine’s Day but that even if she could have raised “just ten times the amount I was going to donate” she would have been happy.
She is urging people to use the hashtag #lovethenhs and use a blue heart on their social media pages to show support.
To support Ms Ruddock’s campaign, visit https://justgiving.com/fundraising/lovetheNHS.