On Tuesday 12th December, Southend United's first team, U23 team and management staff made their annual visit to Southend Hospital.
The Blues players helped spread some festive cheer by handing out gifts and talking to the children on the Neptune Ward as well as visiting A&E.
The players were welcomed into the children’s ward by the staff, nurses, patients and their parents and spent time talking to everyone.
Year on year, more players come along to help make the children’s Christmas a bit more special by handing out signed balls, scarfs, hats and various Southend United-related gifts. But most of the time their presence is what makes the visit magical.
Blues captain Anton Ferdinand spoke to a young patient 'Mitchell' and his Dad, who said: “Mitchell loved meeting the players and it has made his day.
"It’s great that the players give up their time to come in and visit the kids.
"I have a lot of respect for what both the manager and players are doing here after today's visit.”
Phil Brown was full of Christmas cheer as he visited each child and the Blues manager was also lifting the spirits of the staff.
“The boys do this every year and it always gets bigger and better.
"My praise goes out to all the staff as they work extremely hard to keep things running smoothly as well as lifting the spirits of the children at this time of year.
"It's great that we can make a difference to people's lives at this time of year."
Southend United Community & Educational Trust organise the visit every year along with the help of Southend University Hospital staff.
The Communities Events & Corporate Relations manager Elise Fleetwood praised the work of both the club and the community after another successful hospital visit.
“I'd like to say thank you very much to the club for supplying all the gifts that went to all the patients on Tuesday.
"Another thank you has to go to all the staff, players and hospital staff that gave up their time to help out.
"We really do appreciate your on-going support within the community.”