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A cracker of a party was enjoyed by children and families as Hospice in the Weald for Children hosted its very first Christmas bash.
Children with life-limiting and life-threatening illnesses who are supported by our Children’s team were invited to come along to Christmas festivities specially designed for them on Saturday 2nd December.
A host of fun activities were on offer, from festive biscuit decoration to the ‘Magic Carpet’, an interactive projection with motion-responsive games for children of all ages and abilities.
Christmas songs to get everyone singing along were performed by the Hospice’s Creative Musician and volunteers. Santa was also on hand to meet children in a relaxed environment thanks to the team at Once Upon A Wish Events.
Entertainers from Embracing Arts, a theatre company that creates magical theatrical experiences for children with special educational needs and/or life-limiting conditions, ensured everyone was included as they used sensory play, keyword signing, lights, textures, props and instruments.
Emma, mum to two-year-old Ophelia, said: “Ophelia loved the party, she was smiling and laughing, it was so nice to see. We’ve never been to anything like this before, so tailored to Ophelia’s needs.
“The entertainers came up to each child which is just what Ophelia needs to properly catch her attention. Father Christmas’s presents were even tailored to each child. It made me quite emotional to be able to attend something that was so inclusive. And it was just so nice to be able to meet other families too.”
Colin and his wife Alison are foster carers for an 11-year-old boy.
Colin said: “It was lovely. It is a challenge to find appropriate things for our foster son to do, so it means a lot to be able to come to something like this and know he will be accepted for who he is. Sensory activities are just his thing, so he was able to really engage, and we felt looked after as well.”
Jess Farmer, Children’s Support Worker, said: “We know how difficult it can be for the families we work with to find the right activities and environment for their child. We have got to know so many amazing children since we launched the service in January and we wanted to host a special Christmas party just for them.
“It was wonderful to see all the children, their siblings, parents, carers and extended family celebrate together. We want to say a huge thanks to Embracing Arts, Once Upon A Wish Events, and to Dan Littlechild from the Jay Harmer Foundation who kindly donated gifts.”
Hospice in the Weald for Children helps children with life-limiting and life-threatening conditions make the most of every day with their families. The team offers home visits for respite care sessions, hospital visit support, talking therapies, tailored bereavement support, memory making, home music therapy, assistance for children at school and other practical support.
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