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May 21, 2014

March 2014 - May 2014

Our founders, Andre and Jan Poulie
Our founders, Andre and Jan Poulie

We have recently started visiting 2 new hospices; Richard House Children’s Hospice and Haven House Children’s Hospice.

“It was lovely to have the visit by Dr Gee Hee at our residential area with her prescription of strong laughter. The visit was a very funny and enjoyable time and there were a lot of smiles on the faces of the children and also the carers and staff too. Thank you to Dr Gee Hee and Theodora Children’s Trust for making it possible and we look forward to further visits by the Giggle Doctors!”

Nick Oorloff, Clinical Service Manager at Richard House Children’s Hospice, April 2014

On the 12th April the charity celebrated its 20th anniversary. Theodora Children’s Trust was founded by Andre and Jan Poulie back in 1994, in memory of their mother Theodora. As a child Andre spent a lot of time in hospital, but thanks to his mother’s daily bedside visits he remembers the time fondly. In her memory the Poulie brothers wanted to share her legacy of fun and laughter with other children in need.

Andre Poulie, Founder and President of the Theodora Children’s Trust said:

“Since our very first visit to Great Ormond Street Hospital, we have had at our heart the aim to give joy to children in hospital. Close to 500,000 children have been given magical and unforgettable moments of laughter. Through the stories and rich imagination of the Giggle Doctors, we have helped children to escape the hospital environment and enter a colourful world filled with humour, music, magic and adventures.”

Thank you so much for helping to make these magical moments possible.

Feb 21, 2014

November 2013 - February 2014

Dr Yoho
Dr Yoho

Exciting news – our Giggle Doctors have now started bringing smiles to children in hospices!

In January, Dr Yoho visited the children at Demelza Children’s Hospice in Eltham for the very first time. Bringing her own unique mix of fun, laughter, silliness and magic, she brightened the days of the children there.

Demelza offers children, young people and their families the chance to build memories as a family unit. The fun our Giggle Doctors bring will provide additional magical moments for these families to treasure forever.

Kathy Gilbert, Deputy Head of Care at Demelza South East London said:

“Dr Yoho was great fun. She saw all the children and adapted what she did, depending on who she was working with. She blew up balloons, made silly faces – the kids loved it, there was lots of laughing. We’re very excited about having Dr Yoho visit us at Demelza every month.”

Each year we continue to grow and visit more children who are in need of a little magic, fun and laughter. This year we are celebrating our 20th anniversary, and a larger team of Giggle Doctors. These specialist entertainers will make a huge difference to the lives of children in hospitals, hospices and residential care.

Thank you so much for all your support and for making so many smiles possible.

Nov 25, 2013

July 2013 - October 2013

Thomas holding his wand and postcard from Dr Faffy
Thomas holding his wand and postcard from Dr Faffy

Sammy C. got in touch to tell us about the time her 7 year old son Thomas met Dr Faffy.

When did Thomas first become ill?

“Thomas went on a nature walk with his school. When his teacher wasn’t looking he picked a mushroom which unfortunately turned out to be toxic. At first his school thought his symptoms were the result of hay fever but knowing he doesn’t suffer from it I was instantly concerned. We soon realised the toxins from the mushroom had been absorbed through the pores in his skin. His face had swollen to twice its normal size and his eyes had begun to close and go blood shot.

I took him straight to the A&E department of Glan Clwyd Hospital in Rhyl. On arrival we were seen by doctors who told Thomas that he would have to be admitted. Whilst we were waiting I saw two Giggle Doctors entertaining children and their families. They were laughing but I didn’t pay much attention, I was too worried about Thomas and his condition.”

When did Thomas first meet the Giggle Doctors?

“Once settled on the children’s ward Thomas had a series of blood tests to check whether the toxins had affected his organs. He hates needles and was in floods of tears. Dr Faffy appeared on the ward at just that moment and began blowing bubbles and singing songs. She went around the room, entertaining each of the children there. Thomas and I had been in the hospital for 5 hours by that time but Dr Faffy soon made us forget why we were there. She didn’t pass judgement or comment on how his face looked, she looked past all that, concentrating solely on cheering him up. She sang funny songs and encouraged him to take part in some magic. There was such an aura about her in that single moment; she made all the day’s events just fade away. Even the nurses got involved, singing along and bursting the bubbles that Dr Faffy had blown. In my eyes it made them seem human and ‘nice’ as Thomas put it; more than just someone in a blue or green uniform. Another hour passed and Dr Faffy was still going around the wards and the play room. She came back to Thomas and me to sing a song but first made him a balloon banjo. He played along with Dr Faffy with a huge Cheshire cat smile on his face. She gave him a certificate for being so brilliant.”

How did Dr Faffy help?

“There’s a beautiful quote which I think sums up what the Giggle Doctors do for sick children and their parents. “When the world says ‘give up’, hope whispers, ‘try one more time’”. Hope is sometimes found in the smallest of things. One person saying ‘hello’ or singing breaks down barriers and no matter how sick a child may be laughter helps the heart beat on and gives hope and comfort.

 Dr Faffy touched our lives in one single moment with a smile, music and lots of bubbles. She made our stay on the ward easier and helped us to forget about why we were actually there. Even now, Thomas is still talking about his visit from the Giggle Doctor. He now believes magic is not just in Harry Potter movies…he has the wand to prove it.”

Thank you so much for helping us to bring smiles to children like Thomas. We really appreciate your support.

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