I have a fantastic job. I get to make decisions that will make life better for hundreds, even thousands of patients in our hospitals – decision that will sometimes save lives.

Except it’s not just me – it’s a dedicated and professional team of 18 people who make the charity not just tick but hum with energy.

And we don’t actually save the patients – that is down to the wonderful 12,000 or so dedicated staff of the four hospitals of the OUH NHS Foundation Trust – the J.R., the Churchill, the N.O.C., and the Horton General.

We do this by working with the local community, local companies, and grant awarding trusts to raise money which we then use to support initiatives to improve patient welfare and help our hard-working staff. And we don’t decide these priorities - they all come from the staff who tell us where the clinical need is greatest and where the charity can have a real impact.

As I sit typing, the hairs are still standing up on the back of my neck from last Friday’s meeting of the charity Trustees where they approved over £1 million of funding for various initiatives across the hospitals.

This is funding for both state of the art equipment that should provide significantly better treatment for the worst cancers, and to replace a piece of laboratory equipment that all four hospitals depend upon to diagnose many illnesses - but which is now very old and temperamental.

It was a fantastic feeling – to know that during these difficult times for the NHS that we all love and depend on in times of greatest need, that Oxford Hospitals Charity is able to provide such significant support to our hard-working staff to continue to provide excellent care.

But of course it wasn’t just the charity that made this difference.

It was the thousands and thousands of generous people across Oxfordshire and beyond that run, abseil, cycle, bake, and put their hands in their pockets every day, week, month, and year to say thank you for the care and compassion that has been shown to their family, friends, or themselves.

This milestone was all your doing, and long may it continue……we have another 3 meetings this year - so hopefully that could mean another £3 million of funding to agree.

My very grateful thanks and best wishes.

Douglas