Friends of South Shields hospital help young patients

Hospital staff with League of Friends members an the donated toys
Hospital staff with League of Friends members an the donated toys

Christmas came early for child patients at South Tyneside District Hospital thanks to volunteer fund-raisers.

Supplies of toys and craft materials to keep youngsters entertained in the children’s A&E department and the day unit were running low but The League of Friends of South Tyneside Hospitals came to the rescue - buying a variety of goodies.

Ali James, unit manager for paediatrics, said: “It is useful to have things to keep the children entertained or distracted, particularly if they are nervous about a procedure, and the staff like to give them a card and a little gift if it’s their birthday.

“We were amazed and delighted when members of The League of Friends turned up with a full shopping trolley containing everything from toys, bubbles and colouring pens and pencils to birthday cards and wrapping paper.

“We really can’t thank them enough for their generosity and they have told us that if we let them know when stocks run low again, they will replenish them.”

League Chairman, Maureen Young, said: “We were only too pleased to help. It gives us great satisfaction to know that we can bring some enjoyment into children’s lives, especially at a time when they and their families may be under stress.”

Founded in 1949, The League of Friends of South Tyneside Hospitals is one of the oldest NHS voluntary groups.

In the last seven years alone, they have raised a staggering £275,000. Most of the money raised comes from its shop in the main entrance of South Tyneside District Hospital’s Ingham Wing.