SPREAD a Smile has announced its newest partner, Helen & Douglas House, a children’s hospice based in Oxford. Local terminally ill children and their families having supportive stays at the hospice and end-of-life care will be able to enjoy Spread a Smile’s services, including visits from entertainers and artists, virtual visits and treat drops.
Spread a Smile’s mission is to bring joy and laughter to as many seriously ill children as possible in NHS hospitals, clinical settings, hospices and homes across the UK. Helen & Douglas House joins 27 major and speciality NHS hospitals and two other hospice partners already supported by Spread a Smile, taking the charity one step closer to its aim of spreading smiles across the whole of the UK.
The Spread a Smile team of talented entertainers, including musicians, artists and therapy dogs, will support events for the children and their families at the hospice. Families will also be able to access virtual online events and activity sessions, including art clubs, balloon modelling, music lessons and more, all with the aim of spreading smiles and a lot of happiness to children with life-shortening conditions and their families.
Alongside Spread a Smile’s hospice visits and virtual sessions, children and their families at Helen & Douglas House will be able to join special themed activity days celebrating seasonal occasions such as Easter and Christmas, plus family outings and events, giving them the opportunity to join in with fun and exciting experiences that they may otherwise not have access to.
Chloe Pike, Play Team Member at Helen & Douglas House said of the partnership:
“We are so delighted to be working with Spread a Smile. They are an amazing charity which brings so many smiles to so many children around the country. Our families have already enjoyed Spread a Smile’s activities at our children’s summer party on 8th August including a singer, magician and face painter. They also sent us kits to make Coronation Cupcakes which the children loved. We are so grateful for their support and help making magical memories for the families who come to Helen & Douglas House.”
Lucy Jackson, CEO of Spread a Smile added:
“Spread a Smile is delighted to be working with Helen & Douglas House to bring a little joy to the lives of terminally ill children and their families, helping to create special memories during the most difficult of times.
“Our mission is to reach and support as many seriously ill children and young people as possible across the UK. Welcoming Helen & Douglas House to our partner family means we can do just that, and we are proud to support their amazing team in their work helping local families cope with the challenges of looking after a terminally ill baby or child.”