As our way of thanking NHS staff and care-workers for their tireless work throughout the Covid pandemic, the Association for Promoting Retreats established a subsidiary ‘NHS Bursary Fund’ to help them take a much-needed retreat at any of the APR Retreat Houses across the UK. We also offered support to all our member houses as they reopened following lockdown; read what they did here.

Between July 2020 and June 2022, the APR supported 240 NHS- and care- workers to take retreats at APR member houses across the UK, from Cornwall to Inverness, Pembrokeshire to Norfolk. These included hospital receptionists, consultants, doctors, nurses, chaplains, paramedics, mental health coordinators, psychologists, and project managers, to name but a few.

We were especially grateful to APR Members and other donors who generously contributed more than £6,500 to the scheme, which significantly augmented the £15,000 taken from the APR’s own funds. Thank you all!

Many retreatants sent us grateful messages of thanks, with one hospital chaplain writing, ‘Thank you so much for part-funding my retreat. Much of the last 20 months have been hellish, as our NHS Trust has experienced one of the highest number of deaths due to Covid of anywhere in the country. Sitting with dying patients, separated from their loved ones who weren’t allowed into the hospital, and being alongside nursing and other clinical staff burning out and leaving their profession, had taken its toll on me. It was such a privilege to take time out for reflection, prayer and writing. Thank you.’ Do click here to read other feedback from our bursary recipients.

Whilst the NHS Bursary Fund has now closed for applications, our centenary Bursary Fund is still available to support people to go on retreat who would otherwise be unable to afford it. Click here to visit our Bursary Fund page and find out about it!

If you would like to contribute to the APR Bursary Fund, and help finance someone else’s much-needed retreat this year, please follow this link to our online Donation Form.