Child Life: Arts, culture and technology support for kids in hospital
Being a kid can be tough. Being a kid in hospital can be even tougher. That’s why programs like Child Life are so important.
Experts in helping kids cope with uncertainties, Child Life specialists share resources with kids and families to help them manage heightened stress and anxiety, and spend time with kids whose families can’t be with them. Because sometimes you’ve just got to play, or sing, or read stories or make crafts.
With visitor restrictions in place during the COVID-19 pandemic, the personalized, compassionate contact with members of the Child Life team is more important than ever.
Child Life resources include:
- Music therapy, which may involve playing an instrument, listening to a tune, or writing their own songs as a way to deal with their emotions. You may hear a guitar gently strumming, and a woman’s voice singing. Or the chords of a piano, or a maraca. And – of course – you’ll often hear at least one little-girl voice belting out Frozen’s “Let it Go”.
- CHTV, our very own closed-circuit television station. Hosted by NoName, the hardest working sock-puppet in town, the GoodDay Show broadcasts to patient rooms live every weekday, and features interactive games and activities, shout-outs to patients, and special guests. Age-appropriate shows and movies are programmed throughout the day, available free of charge.
- A playroom, filled with toys, games, electronics, craft / art supplies, and mini hospital environments where dolls can practice for tests like MRIs before their kids have them. Child Life specialists also bring the playroom experience to kids who can’t leave their rooms and spend time playing with them. This has been very important with COVID-19 restrictions and for kids who need to be in isolation to stay safe.
- Two libraries: one that’s a resource for families, to help better understand their child’s illness and injury and provide supports. And the second, which is a wonderland of books and stories for all ages. Kids can borrow books to take to their rooms, or hang out for story time.
- Special guests and activities to celebrate birthdays, holidays and special events.
If campaign goal is achieved, additional dollars will be allocated to the area of greatest need.