15 October 2022

Play in hospital week: making the hospital magical

Mum, Laura Twitchen, talks to Southampton Hospitals Charity about the importance of play at Southampton Children’s Hospital. She says:

“Billy has been in and out of hospital for the last four years. Louise, the G2 play leader at Southampton Children’s Hospital, is Billy’s best friend. He can’t wait for her to come in and see him on the ward.

The way she engages with him to help him through medical procedures is amazing, and on the other hand, she is very good at getting him to keep hitting his milestones. She encourages him to be active, use his brain, and makes it fun. The messier the better as far as Billy is concerned! She’d come in with a new toy, kinetic sand, or paints. We did flour play one day to put trucks through as Billy loves vehicles, and he ended up like Casper the ghost that day!


More recently, after attending the British Transplant Games, Billy wanted to do sports play within hospital, so they did egg and spoon races, running races, mini golf challenge and party games. She did all that for him.

Louise is play. Full stop! The kids go crazy for her.

That is what makes Southampton magical. It doesn’t matter how small the thing is that the child has achieved, the praise is always there. It is so important to the kids, especially the long-termers like Billy.”

Play in Hospital Week

Every 10 October, Southampton Hospitals Charity supports play in hospital week. During this week, the play specialists concentrate on raising awareness of the importance of play within hospital settings, and the positive effects it has on our patients and their families.

As a Charity, we fund some of the play specialists/play leaders, the arts and crafts materials used in the sessions, and lots of the rewards given to the children after treatment.

Support play in hospital here through our Amazon Wishlist: https://www.amazon.co.uk/hz/wishlist/ls/2D139DH0CM8EB

Support one of our children’s hospital appeals here: https://southamptonhospitalscharity.org/current-appeals/7

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