Help put the ‘ho-ho-ho’ into hospital this Christmas for young patients

Epsom and St Helier Hospitals Charity are holding a festive toy appeal and, with the generous support of local people, hope to spread a little Christmas cheer to the young patients being cared for at Queen Mary’s Hospital for Children and Casey Ward at Epsom.

Spending the festive season in hospital, or visiting for treatment, is not much fun for children and can be difficult for worried parents, guardians and loved ones. And while staff will always do their upmost to keep young patients entertained and relaxed, this year’s Covid-19 restrictions are making that a bit more challenging.

Yet staff are determined to spread a sprinkle of Christmas cheer and are asking for a helping hand from local people who can afford to spare an additional gift this year. Play Specialists have carefully selected a wish list of toys and craft activities via an Amazon Wish List and are inviting local people to donate to the cause. Some items, like colouring books, pencils, and small toys, will make up individual ‘playtime packs’ to provide a welcome distraction for a child (and their siblings) waiting for care and treatment in our dedicated paediatric outpatient or A&E departments. Other arts and crafts items can be allocated to young patients staying on the wards, while all plastic toys will be deep-cleaned and sanitised before use by another child.

Sarah Montgomery, Play Specialist said: “We know that coming into hospital can be quite daunting for our young patients but when we give them one of our ‘playtime packs’ it normally results in a big smile!

“In fact, there will be a need for the packs well beyond the twelve days of Christmas! So, if you are able to help us create the packs by purchasing one or two small items from the Amazon Wish List, it would be much appreciated and could make a big difference! We are still so grateful for the immense generosity the community has already shown for their local hospitals throughout the pandemic. We also know Covid-19 meant financial difficulty for many so of course we’re inviting people to support the appeal only if they have something to spare.”

For the Amazon Wish List go to: www.amazon.co.uk/hz/wishlist/ls/31CH7F4B0Q2KU  Please remember to write a message with your order or contact the Charity Team at [email protected] or 0132 735 262 to let them know about your donation otherwise you will indeed be a Secret Santa!

Please also contact the Charity Team if you would like to donate but use a different retailer or drop off your donation.

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