Burnley charity champ joins forces with well known florists to launch 'Roses for Heroes' project to thank care home workers
Care home workers across Burnley and Pendle have been presented with a single rose to say a heartfelt 'thankyou ' for being the unsung heroes throughout the pandemic.
Over 1,000 white roses have now been presented to care home staff thanks to charity champion James Anderson and flower shop owners Jennifer James and Kerry Woodall who joined forces to launch the remarkable 'Roses for Heroes' project.
James, who launched Depher, a community interest company in 2017 to provide emergency heating and plumbing services to the elderly and disabled, free of charge, came up with the idea as he wanted the scores of care workers to be recognised, saying: "While so much deserved praise and thanks has gone to the NHS I was thinking about all the people who work in care homes, taking care of the elderly and disabled, and I really wanted to do something to recognise the fantastic work they do and also to thank them personally.
"They are the 'forgotten heroes' in a way who have worked tirelessly and I think it is important that we thank them."
When James approached Jennifer and Kerry, who recently bought Kathleen's Florists, based in Burnley's Coal Clough Lane, they were more than happy to get on board with the project.
Jennifer said: "So far we have given out around 1,060 roses to care home staff across Burnley, Nelson, Colne and Barnoldswick and we still have a few more to visit.
"We were delighted that James asked us to be part of this project as it helps to raise awareness also of the marvellous work that Depher does."
To make the project even more special Jennifer and Kerry have been presenting the roses in person, arriving at care homes and asking managers and their staff to step outside for a surprise presentation.
Jennifer said: "The response has been fantastic and quite overwhelming.
"We have had some care workers in tears they have been so touched by the gesture.
"It's wonderful to be able to thank them like this."
James now wants to extend the project and plans are in the pipeline to present red roses to fire and rescue workers, blue roses to the police and yellow roses to ambulance workers.