Patients and visitors could be forgiven for thinking the Short Stay Paediatric Assessment Unit (SSPAU) resembled more of a toy shop than a treatment area in a hospital.
Staff from Darlington Building Society visited the Friarage Hospital to hand over a bundle of toys for children of all ages.
The special delivery was part of the Society’s 160th birthday celebrations and their commitment to help 160 organisations locally with the toys donated by the building society and its members.
Roberta Chan and Henri Kennedy had the pleasure of dropping off everything from cars and dinosaurs to painting supplies, books, dummies and flasks and Henry Whitehead, 9, from Thirsk, was one of the first patients to get to play with their gifts.
“It’s lovely to give something back as when I was younger I was in hospital quite a bit and it’s great we can help out children and staff this way,” said Roberta.
Henri added: “We hope the toys will help to cheer the children up a bit – it can be a little daunting coming into hospital so hopefully this can help them take their minds off things.
“We chose the Friarage as a place to help because a lot of our members come here and use the services so it will be a cause close to their hearts.”
Jo Kelsey, Unit Manager, SSPAU:
“On behalf of all the children that use the Children’s Unit I would like to say a huge thank you to the staff for thinking about us and organising it and to the members of the Darlington Building Society for their very kind donations.
“We’re always so very grateful for the support of the local people and we are amazed at their generosity.
“Coming into hospital for any reason can be a very stressful time for both the children and their families, with these donations we can aim to relieve that stress as much as possible through distraction and play.”
There is also a video of the gift donation.