Dionne Davies, who is a Play Specialist on the Ward, has told of the overwhelming kindness and generosity of those that supported the official Isle of Wight Toy Appeal with so many Islanders coming together as a community to make sure that as many deserving children as possible were given a special gift for Christmas.
“We never know how many children will be on the Ward over the Christmas period. Last year the ward was full.”
“We do our very best to get the children home at this time of year, but this obviously depends on the child’s condition. Children that attend the Ward between Christmas Eve and Boxing Day receive a small gift, while those that have to remain on the ward Christmas Day receive a sack of presents that is delivered to the bedside.”
As well as the children on the Ward, children living on the Island who are facing serious illness have also been recipients.
Special thanks also to go to the Island Scooterists for their delivery of fabulous gifts, on wheels, and the gorgeous gifts from Farnsworth Newsagent’s in Newport that were especially lovely for the babies on the ward.
The Hessey’s of the Three Bishops Pub in Brightstone gave some really great gifts that were so wonderful for the children to open on the big day. In addition, thanks goes to the children and staff of St Helen’s Primary School who gave selection boxes and to the Hills family in Ryde who gave lots of fun colouring books and pencils for the children’s sacks on Christmas morning.
As part of the festivities, an unusual visitor came to the ward from the Owl and Monkey Haven, with a member of the Haven staff dressed as an owl, who gave out gifts to those on the Ward ahead of Santa. The Children’s Ward staff would like to extend their thanks to those who made that visit possible, it was a lovely surprise for the children (and staff).
Last but not least the staff of the Ward would like to thank the ‘Ward Grandma’, who they adopted some years ago as the Children’s Ward Grandma, for all her kindness and help in providing clothes and art and crafts throughout the year and her special gift for the Children this Christmas.