On Wednesday 30th June 2021, our current contracts with the NHS, for providing step-down homeless care services and for people living with HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders, came to an end.
We had to go into emergency mode and start planning our next steps, which was all quite challenging.
Then, just before 3 pm, we were given yet another temporary contract extension until 31 October 2021.
We now have 4 months of breathing space in which to continue our battle with the powers-that-be to persuade them to put in place a permanent solution because these temporary contracts can’t continue indefinitely.
Our petition has played – and will continue to play - a huge part in this process. With the support of the public, Mildmay just cannot be so easily dismissed.
An example of the power of this petition is what happened after an ITN reporter saw it. The reporter, Katie Barnfield, whom some of our patients recognised and got quite excited about seeing in person (clearly they are big fans of ITN) came across our petition on change.org and got interested in telling our story and our relationship with Princess Diana, particularly because 1 July would have been Diana’s 60th birthday. Ms Barnfield came to Mildmay yesterday, on Diana's birthday with Eleanor, her cameraperson, to speak to our staff and patients and make a film about us. It was broadcast on ITV London News at 6 pm the same evening.
You can see the film that was broadcast here:
Princess Diana was passionate about dismantling the stigma around HIV, and very much concerned with helping people who are homeless. So it is fitting that on her birthday, we remember her, and we remember Harry, and all they have done for Mildmay between them.
We are very grateful to them but just as much to you all, for standing up for us. Thank you.