Above & Beyond Community Fundraising Officer Lydia McGivern and Andrea BennettAbove & Beyond has launched its first National ‘Elf Service Day to celebrate our wonderful NHS staff and to raise vital funds to improve patient experience in our hospitals.

Andrea Bennett is one of the 9,000 dedicated NHS staff that treats over 840,000 people from across Bristol and the South West in our hospitals each year. Andrea is a nurse at the Outpatients Department in the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children (BRHC) and she has already gone above and beyond – quite literally – by taking on a sponsored 15,000ft skydive with colleague Emily Hewson. Together, with help from colleagues, friends and family, Andrea and Emily have raised over £4,200 to fund a waiting area for children with sensory impairments.

Andrea tells us what inspires her to keep raising money for the hospital and why she’s getting involved in the National ‘Elf Service:

What is it like being a nurse at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children?

It’s the most amazing job in the world. We get to meet some incredible people and that makes me so grateful every day.

What is your favourite thing about your job?

Meeting these lovely children and their families, and being able to make a little difference to their lives.

How does Above & Beyond help your team and hospital?

Without help and support from Above & Beyond the BRHC would not be the wonderful, welcoming environment for children that it is. Above & Beyond also does a great job of bringing teams and wards together by encouraging us with fundraising events and raffles.

Why are you taking part in National 'Elf Service Day?

Because I’ve never grown up! But, more importantly, I can’t wait to see the look on the faces of the children – it will be like our own winter wonderland.

What are your plans for the day?

In addition to dressing up, we’re having a brilliant bake sale and have some great ideas for stocking fillers. Between us, we already have some very impressive elf outfits – it’s amazing to discover what your colleagues have lurking in their wardrobes!

What are you most looking forward to about National 'Elf Service Day?

Seeing lots of people get involved and dressed up in pointy elf hats!

We want hospital staff, schools, companies and community groups to join the National 'Elf Service on Friday 8 December! Find out more about the National 'Elf Service Day on the event pagejoin our Facebook event or contact Lydia McGivern on [email protected] or 0117 3700 842 for more information.