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Footballers give £750,000 to nurses

A fund for struggling nurses is set to receive £750,000 after a campaigner launched a Live 8-style appeal asking Premiership footballers to donate a day's pay to the "crisis-hit" carers.

Footballers including Ryan Giggs, Thierry Henry and Steven Gerrard have forfeited their earnings for 13 May in favour of the May Day for Nurses hardship fund.

Dr Noreena Hertz, a third world campaigner and academic, helped organise Live 8 and decided to use the idea - substituting rock stars for footballers - to help nurses.

In all, 239 players have pledged their earnings and whole clubs such as West Ham, Fulham and Tottenham Hotspur have decided to back the cause.

Top-flight players can earn more than £100,000 a week in comparison with an annual average salary for a nurse of £21,000.

The cash raised will go into a fund administered by the Royal College of Nursing which will be distributed to nurses who need money for things like child care or transport to work.

For more information go to May Day for Nurses

Your comments:

"Simply put nurses should not have to rely on these initiatives but it does help to raise the profile of nurses pay. I should not need to do regular overtime shifts to afford to live in London but I do" - Name and address witheld

"No, it is gimmicky and does nothing to enhance nursing as a serious profession. Nurses needing money for childcare or transport to work indicate the need for better pay and conditions, not a charitable fund" - Name and address witheld

"No, I think we should be given a living wage by the government in line with other professionals. If we become a charity we will never win and end up having to fundraise all the time like we have to do for equipment. We should be recognised for the work we do without begging"- Name and address witheld

"Definitely we should all get a percentage, but it's politicians who should be giving too - before we all leave and find alternative emploment" - Name and address witheld

"How patronising to have to get footballers to donate money to the poor nurses fund. Yes thank you for your generosity but how about helping us campaign for better pay. Why do the goverment allow so much money to be spent on football but not nursing care. As a practice nurse in a busy GP practice, doing most of the work I may add, why don't they bring our salaries in line with the lazy GPs" - Name and address witheld

"I really can't believe that nursing has come to this. How many other professions are there where it takes three years of training to get to the lowest level and then continuous training for the rest of our working lives need a charity to help them out!! It is really so demoralising" - Name and address witheld

"I think it's a great idea" - Name and address witheld