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Toys boost gift for siblings room at N&N neonatal unit

09:16 22 January 2014

Sam Black, 4, and his sister Lucy, 6, take a look at some of the toys and puzzles donated from funds raised by recruitment firm Hays for the siblings of children in the Neo Natal Intensive Care Unit at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. From left, Emma Long, Hays; Amy Park, NICU nurse; Riva Hutchinson, Hays; Lynsey Degville, Toys R Us; and Julia Shirtliffe, Bliss Family Care co-ordinator. Picture: Denise Bradley

Sam Black, 4, and his sister Lucy, 6, take a look at some of the toys and puzzles donated from funds raised by recruitment firm Hays for the siblings of children in the Neo Natal Intensive Care Unit at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. From left, Emma Long, Hays; Amy Park, NICU nurse; Riva Hutchinson, Hays; Lynsey Degville, Toys R Us; and Julia Shirtliffe, Bliss Family Care co-ordinator. Picture: Denise Bradley

Archant

A hospital department has received a toys boost after a Norwich-based recruitment firm generated hundreds of pounds through a fundraising drive.

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Staff from Hays handed over the gifts to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital’s siblings room yesterday within the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).

The recruitment agency, which is based in Prince of Wales Road, in Norwich, raised more than £850 in three weeks for the hospital’s charity by asking its clients to make a donation to the good cause. £200 of that was used to buy a Christmas stocking and books for children on the NICU last month.

Organisers asked donors to buy Toys R Us vouchers and staff from the hospital helped choose the toys, games and books for the unit.

Katie O’Sullivan, senior recruitment consultant for Hays, said they approached the hospital to support the N&N’s charity and were asked to help improve the facilities in the siblings room at NICU. She added that one of their clients, Tobar, had also donated toys.

“We wanted to support a local charity and the neonatal unit helps a lot of people’s children and we wanted to give something back. We have got a play kitchen, lots of interactive toys, and lots of books to fill the unit up. It is not just going to be for Christmas, it is going to constantly used,” she said.

The NICU can treat up to 40 poorly babies at any one time. At times over half these children have siblings. The siblings unit is an escape for the children to play, interact with other children but also be taught from centre managers what is happening to their siblings so they understand what is going on.

Jill Wakley, NICU matron at the N&N, said: “We are absolutely delighted that the staff of Hays have chosen to support our neonatal intensive care unit with the donation of toys for our siblings room. We consider it very important that siblings are included and welcomed onto the unit when their brother or sister needs to be admitted and these toys will make such a great difference to their experience and memory of their visit.”

Staff from the Norwich branch of Toys R Us also attended the toys handover yesterday along with their mascot Geoffrey the Giraffe.

Are you raising money for the N&N’s charity? Contact health correspondent Adam Gretton 01603 772419 or email adam.gretton@archant.co.uk

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