Today marks the end of the Lord-Lieutenant of County Antrim's tenure as a Trustee and Council Member of SSAFA, the Armed Forces Charity. It's full name is: Soldiers', Sailors' & Airmen's Families Association and it is the oldest military charity in the UK.
Mr David McCorkell served as Regional Chair of Northern Ireland & the Republic of Ireland for six years, having been appointed in 2016 and he served two three year terms. Typically Trustees only serve two terms.
He said “it’s been a privilege to contribute to such a historic and worthy charity”.
Details on SSAFA's Governance can be found here: www.ssafa.org.uk/about-us/our-organisation/our-governance
The following message was circulated by the Lord-Lieutenant, in his capacity of Knight Commander of the Commandery of Ards, the head of St John in Northern Ireland, to the the volunteers of the Order of St John in NI:
I hope that this finds you well during these uncertain times.
I am conscious that the COVID-19 pandemic has meant that we have had very few chances to meet in person, so I wanted to reach out to you electronically. It seems a long time ago that we convened in St Anne’s Cathedral for my Installation and the Investiture. Undoubtedly a personal highlight of the year for me. I would like to take this opportunity to reiterate my thanks to my predecessor, Viscount Brookeborough KG, for his service to the Commandery.
I wanted to share with you some stats that were released about St John Ambulance’s UK-wide’s contribution to the pandemic. This week, following the Grand Prior’s visit to thank St John staff at a vaccine centre in England, it was announced that our volunteers have given an incredible 850,000 hours of their time, many on top of full time jobs, in order to deliver millions of COVID-19 & flu jabs. This doesn’t even take into account the hours and hours logged in our ambulances, at events and delivering vital training.
The contribution from our volunteers, particularly in carrying out great numbers of patient transfers, has been no less heroic, and very inspiring. I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your contribution to the activities of the Commandery of Ards. We appreciate the sacrifice that many of you make in order to fulfil our sacred duty and serve humanity.
We have much to look forward to next year, as we move into HM The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, our Sovereign Head. We will also mark the 100th Anniversary of St John Cadets. We are hopeful that restrictions will ease allowing us to meet in some capacity at Hillsborough in March for an Investiture and then meet again at St Columb’s Cathedral to mark St John’s Day in June.
Finally, renewed thanks for your continued support of the Commandery and I wish your family and you a very happy Christmas and all best wishes for the New Year. During this festive season, we are filled with hope. I am hopeful of meeting again soon next year to continue to carry out the Order’s duty.
ProFide, Pro Utilitate Hominum
Stay safe and well.
David W McCorkell KStJ
Knight Commander of the Commandery of Ards and Her Majesty's Lord-Lieutenant of County Antrim"
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