With visits to hospital patients being impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, staying in contact with loved ones has never been more important. The donation of 68 Samsung Tab A tablets, equating to one per six beds across the hospital, will help the children being treated at GOSH stay connected with their friends and family during the lockdown, and thereafter will be used to support online learning and entertainment needs.
Blue Square has joined forces with the Sunshine Baby Bank, a new charity supporting vulnerable children and their families in the Southend-on-Sea and Rochford districts of Essex, to jointly fund the donation. Blue Square will supply the technology and all ongoing support and training.
Claire Williams, Head of Patient Experience and Engagement at GOSH, said: “During these unprecedented times, staying in touch with loved ones takes on even more importance than usual, particularly for those in the hospital. The generous donation of the Samsung tablets will make a real difference to seriously ill children and their families at GOSH and for that, we’d like to say a big thank you.”
Andrew Leaver, managing director of Blue Square, said: “We feel so proud of the important work that Great Ormond Street Hospital continue to do, helping seriously ill children who need it most. In these unprecedented times, so many aspects of our society have come under pressure and this has meant that the most vulnerable people in our communities have often found themselves in need of a new kind of support. The children who are cared for by the incredible staff at GOSH, have encountered new challenges and limitations surrounding human interaction and missing out on time with their loved ones. In collaboration with our fellow supporters at the Sunshine Baby Bank charity, we are so grateful for the opportunity to help make these testing times a little easier for the patients at GOSH, their parents and their families.”
Pauline Cooper, founder and trustee of the Sunshine Baby Bank, said: “Many young people across the country have been denied contact with friends and family in recent months, but nowhere is this problem more acute than for vulnerable children in hospital. I hope that as some of us begin to enjoy the freedoms we previously took for granted, the donation of these tablets will help the children being treated at Great Ormond Street Hospital .”
The Sunshine Baby Bank is a new charity that has been fast-tracked for approval during the COVID-19 crisis. Since its launch in June, in the Southend-on-Sea and Rochford districts of Essex, the Sunshine Baby Bank has been buying and supplying new and donated baby care items for the parents of infants (0-5 years old) who are living in poverty.
The charity will help to coordinate support between government, other third sector agencies and private companies to alleviate the suffering of an estimated 34% of children living in relative poverty in large parts of the locality; a situation that’s thought to have deteriorated further since the COVID-19 lockdown.