Project information

Making Smiles in Hospitals

Children need to be children even in hospital and happy children get better quicker. Pod magicians, musicians, puppeteers and clowns will provide 360 monthly shows which will bring magic, fun and laughter to around 3600 children in 30 hospitals and hospices throughout the UK.

December 2010 - November 2011

Charity information: Pod Charitable Trust

Pod Charitable Trust logo
  • Need

    Need

    A sick child has to endure physical suffering plus the additional burden of emotional distress. A hospitalized child is deprived of all the things that bring security and parents can’t always be there. The child may be frightened, surrounded by strange faces and equipment and other children who may be upset and in pain. Everyone tries to limit the stress a child experiences but hospitals have limited funding for non-medical activities. This is where Pod can help.

    Solution

    Pod can help to alleviate the trauma of a hospital stay for thousands of children in 30 hospitals and hospices by providing monthly shows. Sad and tense faces will be transformed into smiling ones as children are distracted and join in the fun. After the show is over the entertainer visits children who are too poorly to join in or who are in isolation so that everyone has something to smile about. The mind plays an important part in the healing process and happy children get better quicker!

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Make children happy at 6 hospitals in the North East .

    Activities

    » Provide 12 monthly shows at Gateshead, N. Tees, N. Tyneside Newcastle Freeman, Newcastle General and Newcastle RVI hospitals (72 shows in all).

    Success will be providing respite, relaxation and fun for about 720 children - making smiles in hospitals in the North East and helping children on the road to recovery.


    Aim 2

    Make children happy at 6 hospitals and one hospice in Wales.

    Activities

    » Provide 12 monthly shows at Abegavenny, Bridgend, Carmarthen, Newport, Swansea, Withybush hospitals and Ty Hafan hospice (84 shows in all)

    Success will be providing respite, relaxation and fun for about 840 children - making smiles in a hospice and hospitals in Wales and helping children on the road to recovery.


    Aim 3

    Make children happy at 6 hospitals in the North West.

    Activities

    » Provide 12 monthly shows at Blackburn, Bradford, Bury, Preston, Rochdale and Warrington hospitals (72 shows in all)

    Success will be providing respite, relaxation and fun for about 720 children - making smiles in hospitals in the NorthWest and helping children on the road to recovery.


    Aim 4

    Make children happy at 5 London hospitals.

    Activities

    » Provide 12 monthly shows at Barnet, Carshalton, Ilford, St George’s and Watford hospitals (60 shows in all)

    Success will be providing respite, relaxation and fun for about 600 children - making smiles in London hospitals and helping children on the road to recovery.


    Aim 5

    Make children happy at 5 hospitals and one hospice in other areas of the UK.

    Activities

    » Provide 12 monthly shows at Aberdeen, North Staffs, Plymouth, Ulster and West Suffolk hospitals and Acorns hospice (72 shows in all).

    Success will be providing respite, relaxation and fun for about 720 children - making smiles in a hospice and hospitals and helping children on the road to recovery.


  • Impact

    Impact

    Pod shows will help children to recover and make future hospital visits less frightening, making a positive memory of their hospital stay.

    Pod expects feedback in the form of comments, letters, pictures and photographs from hospitals, children and parents. They often tell us that a Pod show was a turning point in the the emotional recovery of a very sick or traumatised child. If re-admitted, children remember Pod shows and frequently ask if there will be a show while they are in hospital

    Risk

    Pod has carried out Risk Assessments. The risk that entertainers may bring infection into hospitals is combatted by entertainers adhering to Pod’s Infection Control Guidelines. The risk that children may be upset by inappropriate remarks or behaviour is combatted by entertainers following Pod Guidelines. Professional children’s entertainers with CRB disclosures and Child Protection Training are employed and Hospital Play Specialists are present at shows. Pod has Public Liability Insurance.

    Reporting

    Donors will receive a schedule listing the dates of visits and (subject to hospital permission) donors can attend shows and see Pod in action. At the end of the funding period, donors will receive a detailed report on the shows with feedback from hospital staff and photographs of shows.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £18,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £3,600 North East 72 shows at 6 hospitals @ £50 per show
      £4,200 Wales 84 shows at 6 hospitals/ 1 hospice @ £50 per show
      £3,600 North West 72 shows at 6 hospitals @ £50 per show
      £3,000 London 60 shows at 5 hospitals @ £50 per show
      £3,600 Other areas 72 shows at 6 hospitals/1 hospice @ £50 per show
  • Background

    Location

    Funding is required for shows at 30 hospitals and hospices which are at present being temporarily funded from Pod’s reserves and do not have donors to fund long-term visits. Many of these hospitals are in economically depressed areas where local funding is harder to obtain and Pod needs to secure specific funding to enable these visits to continue from December 2010 onwards. Without ensured funding, shows will have to cease at the end of November.

    Beneficiaries

    Pod is determined that children in less fortunate areas will continue to benefit from Pod visits. The project will ensure that around 3600 children in areas where fund-raising is difficult (on average there are 10 children at a show) will be able to join in a Pod session, forget their pain and worry, have fun and something to smile about whilst they are in hospital and a positive memory of their stay when they eventually leave hospital. .

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Pod is a nationwide charity which has been organising entertainment for children in hospital since 1977. Pod now organizes 180 shows every month in 150 hospitals and hospices from Aberdeen to Truro. Pod’s team of 40 sensitive professional children’s entertainers are experienced at entertaining children in hospital and work for Pod for far less than their usual fees. Pod has close working relationships with all participating hospitals.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.

    People

    Margaret Munford

    Pod Administrator for 19 years. Her salary and costs are paid by Pod's League of Friends, a separate charity. So all Pod funds are spent on shows.

    John Wilkinson

    Magician in the N.E., full of fun, with tricks that intrigue all ages and balloon models for everyone. Everyone wants to help John make magic.

    John Piper

    Puppeteer /ventriloquist in N.W and Midland hospitals who is responsible for the shrieks of laughter emanating from the wards!

    Harriet Einsiedel

    Musician whose enthusiasm is contagious as she encourages children in hospitals in the S.E. to make music using her vast collection of instruments.