At the heart of Children in Hospital Ireland’s work is its play service which is now available to children in hospitals throughout Ireland. It is the only charity managing such a voluntary service in Irish hospitals. By providing engaging and supportive play in wards, playrooms, emergency departments and outpatient departments, Children in Hospital Ireland play volunteers nurture curiosity and creativity and provide distraction from the stress of being in hospital.
Did you know?
Each year in Ireland there are, on average, over 270,000 hospital visits by children!
For over 100,000 children this means an average of a 3-night stay.
Every year, 75,000 child inpatients are under 4 years of age and almost all are admitted through A&E – an unexpected and unplanned visit.
Children need special care in hospitals
Children are particularly vulnerable, both physically and emotionally. For them, being in hospital can be a source of anxiety and fear, especially if they are unexpectedly separated from their family. Along with having to cope with illness, this difficult experience can affect their normal growth and development.