100-year-olds get their jab together as army of volunteers support covid vaccine roll-out

A centenarian couple who have been married for 76 years have been vaccinated together at Woodhouse Park Lifestyle Centre in Wythenshawe – where more than 500 people a day are now receiving the jab.

Raymond and Jess Gardner, both aged 100-year-olds, were delighted to receive their Pfizer BioNTech jabs as part of the first wave of the vaccination programme.

Jess Gardner
Raymond Gardner

Our photographer and community reporter, David McLenachan, who is volunteering in the vaccination centre, was there to capture the moment, as well as speak to fellow volunteers about their experiences.

Beverley Lawford
One of the marshall volunteers, Beverley Lawford from Denton, aged 53, said: “I was furloughed from my job in the events industry due to Covid.
“I began to look for volunteer work to keep my mind active, I came across my current role working for the NHS helping the elderly receive the vaccine at the Wythenshawe centre, which is such a momentous occasion for them. I have received excellent treatment from the NHS for myself so it feels wonderful to give something back.”
The marshal volunteers help the centres run smoothly, including car park attendants, helping with registration, the waiting system, guiding people to the vaccination pods, managing the waiting area afterwards, and then exiting. So far more than 1,000 people have come forward to help marshal the vaccination sites, and ensure that the project runs as smoothly as possible.

Hundreds of thousands of people in Manchester are set to be immunised over the coming months. In addition to community vaccination efforts work is also underway in the city’s hospitals, as well as pharmacies, GP surgeries and the regional mass vaccination centre at the Etihad Stadium. Members of the public will be contacted directly when it is their turn to be vaccinated.

Councillor Bev Craig, Executive Member for Adult Health and Wellbeing for Manchester City Council, said: “So many Mancunians have gone above and beyond since the beginning of this pandemic. We are asking for one last effort as we push to vaccinate as many residents as possible.

“The vaccination programme is the largest the city has ever seen and we are keen to see it rolled out as quickly across the city for as many people as possible. We can all do our bit either by getting the jab, by volunteering at one of our vaccination sites, or encouraging our friends and families to take it up when it’s offered.

“Vaccination will be the best tool we have if we are to return to normality and I am confident our incredible local healthcare teams rise to this new challenge and succeed.”




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