Penny Appeal Australia assists healing through play

Bankstown-Lidcombe Hospital’s youngest patients were treated to a day of fun and laughter as part of Penny Appeal Australia’s inaugural Eid Toy Drive.

#TeamOrange, a group of the aid organisation’s volunteers took to the hospital’s paediatric ward this morning bearing dozens of brand-new gifts that were donated by members of the local community to children undergoing medical treatment.

Penny Appeal Australia’s Marketing and Fundraising Manager, Jasmin Ghandour says this is the first time the global aid organisation has run the initiative.

“In the joyful spirit of the upcoming Eid al Adha, we encouraged the community to share their blessings with those less fortunate during such a festive occasion, and this starts at home,” she said.

“We see how busy parents are when caring for their child that’s in hospital—buying gifts is the last thing on their mind and they are limited when it comes to activities to keep them happy.

“We want to show the world that there is no limit to the smiles that you can donate.”

Outside at the children’s courtyard, #TeamOrange hosted a range of activities including games, face painting and balloon animals.

“For children, this time of celebration is spent playing and exchanging gifts, so for those who are unable to celebrate at home, we thought to bring the excitement to them and offer support to their families during this festive occasion,” Ms Ghandour said.

Bankstown-Lidcombe Hospital’s Nursing Unit Manager, Nora Omar says this is the first time the hospital has been included in an initiative of this kind.

“The volunteers did an amazing job with all of our patients and our families,” she said.

“We had a patient who wasn’t able to come out of her room for about a week.

“To see her come outside and interact with everyone was just amazing…we are forever grateful.”