Queen Mary’s Hospital for Children looked particularly festive this Christmas thanks to a team of Santa’s little helpers who decorated the hospital from top-to-toe.
Staff and patients in Queen Mary’s welcomed volunteers from RELX Group, a London-based information and analytics company, who generously gave up two days of their time to deliver and decorate multiple Christmas trees, hang an array of beautiful decorations and spread a sleigh-full of festive cheer. Play Specialist Sara Smith explained: “We were contacted by the team from RELX earlier in the year, and absolutely jumped at the chance to have their help in bringing Christmas to Queen Mary’s.
“Spending time in hospital can be a difficult and worrying time for children and their families, and that can be even harder at Christmas – a time when most of us look forward to being at home with our loved ones. We always try to go that extra mile to make sure those we care for are as comfortable as possible and help them enjoy this special time of year despite the difficult circumstances. Thanks to the hard work of the RELX team, and the generosity of everyone who made a donation towards the fabulous decorations, the hospital looks more festive than ever and is alive with the Christmas spirit.”
A significant amount of planning went into making the yuletide transformation of Queen Mary’s possible, spearheaded by a social media campaign encouraging local people to get involved by donating decorations, children’s books, toys and DVDs. Alicia Reynolds and Debbie Francis from RELX explained: “Each year all employees have the opportunity to have two days off to volunteer with community projects. A number of people in our company were keen to support a local charitable cause for children this year, which is why we chose Queen Mary’s – most of our volunteer team have children who have been patients at the hospital at some point, so this was a great opportunity to say thank you!
“We have been overwhelmed by the tremendous support we received from the local community – everyone was so generous and really keen to give something back to Queen Mary’s for the fantastic care their children received. We’d like to say a special thank you to: our friends and family, RELX (UK) Ltd, Jason Man and Van on the Move (who kindly delivered all of the donations free of charge), Surrey Police, Homebase in Staines, Carshalton Mums group, Stanley Park Infants and Junior schools, and Roots Garden Nursery in Taplow.
“There was a great sense of achievement after we had finished decorating, especially seeing the children get so excited. This has been such a rewarding experience – we hope to come back and do the same next year!”
Charlotte Hall, Chief Nurse, said: “It has been wonderful to see a smile brought to so many faces thanks to the sterling efforts of the RELX team. On behalf of everyone at Queen Mary’s Hospital for Children, I’d like to say a huge thank you to the volunteer team, as well as everyone who donated, for bringing such joy to the hospital and our patients this Christmas.”