At the end of October, I was delighted to read about the launch of the Poppy Hijab, which was highlighted through the work of the fantastic think-tank British Future.
The Poppy Hijab was launched to help raise awareness and money for the annual Poppy Appeal, which is run by the Royal British Legion.
While the Poppy Hijab created a cause for debate, I felt it was a shame, that its critics failed to highlight facts, which included those, who Poppy Appeal money goes to support, the many services provided by the Royal British Legion, while demonstrating a clear ignorance towards Middle Eastern and British history.
I found it a cause for amusement, that among the critics was the Stop the War Coalition’s front group, No Glory in War, who launched their initiative outside the home of leading World War One poet and soldier Seigfried Sassoon, and while describing Sassoon as “British”, failed to even mention his heritage as an Iraqi Jew.
Critics also failed to mention, how Poppy Appeal money is used to provide rehabilitation and social care, to those suffering from a wide range of physical and psychological conditions, mobility vehicles for the elderly and disabled.
Also interesting, was the critics failure to even justify their opposition to providing nursing care to elderly people, with lifelong conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer's.
Since 1921, the Royal British Legion has been providing these kind of services and a whole lot more, with full details of what they do, being available to read on their website.
It’s also worth mentioning, that Poppy Appeal fundraising is not just limited to Remembrance Day either but is a 365 day mission, which is undertaken mostly by volunteers.
The Royal British Legion also has an open membership, where people of all backgrounds and age groups can join (you don’t have to be in the Army to join), and with the RBL being listed in the top five of the most trusted charities in the UK, its clear, that nearly one hundred years after its founding, the Poppy Appeal is still held dear in millions of British homes.