Young patients at Wexham Park Hospital can play outside thanks to a new purpose-built sensory garden. Our vision for a beautiful bright outdoor space to allow all children, young people and their families to spend time in a non-medical environment has been achived thanks to your funding.
The garden officially opened on 19th December 2019 by Father Christmas and a young helper-a previous patient at Wexham; and a daughter of one of the fundraisers for this project. The Father Christmas himself, a paramedic who devotes his time to bring jog and visits our hospital each Christmas with gifts.
The bright space now includes seating areas, sports wall, a Hobbit House for counselling and break away plus play and physio equipment all designed to help patients whilst in our care. A therapy zone includes planted areas, chimes and artificial grass so children can receive physiotherapy in the fresh air. The garden had £80K in raised funding from Race Wexham event in August 2019 plus local community donations.
Senior matron for paediatrics Ros Rushworth said:
The children and families are going to have such fun . .. staff too. The area offers so much joy and distraction and now gives children a sense of normality and comfort at what can be a distressing time for them and their parents. The ward here at Wexham Park saw 5000 inpatients and in our PAU 10,000 last year, so this is such a new innovation and real asset for the trust.
Emma Carr, the project manager and arts manager of the charity, added:
I created a proposal over a year ago and tried to get funding for the playground. The original play area was in desperate need of starting again as equipment was rotten and the area dull. The proposal was worked on with ward team and myself to design a space that met many expectations. After a few months the charity took the idea to Race Wexham held at Windsor Racecourse in August. From there we got such amazing support, and we reached our target of £75K from extremely kind and generous businesses. Other funds soon came in and the project was able to reach a fund of £80,000. I want to thank all that believed in my vision and trusted the charity, believing in my idea of colour, distraction and well-being. Human kindness speaks volumes here today and there are so many to thank. As humans we respond to so much more and today we have proved we are so much more. With your support and trust, the charity improves patients lives plus their families and the amazing NHS staff.
The objective now will continue to fund the garden to maintain and keep it in order.
The Sensory Garden was designed around the specific needs of the children and young people at Wexham Park Hospital. Objective to open all year round, to intrigue and play on the children's senses and imaginations. Giving acolourful pavilion to give shelter and provide them with a safe outdoor space. We hope that all the children and people who spend time in the garden will feel a sense of fun and relaxation. Most importantly we want to reduce stress, fear and anxiety that is felt in an unfamiliar setting.
Volunteer day saw 10 people come and remove and dispose of all the equipment. The equipment had sadly gone beyond being able to be used elsewhere. The whole area was cleaned and jet washed ready for the Installation by Eibe Play Ltd next month.
Wexham children's play area budget:
Crawling Bridge and arch £1012.22
Table Flower and seating and planters £3574.64
Play unit Butterfly and Beginners Walk £4850.40
Wicker Hut and Tunnel £1707.96
Chimes x 4 £900
Play Panels and posts- £390 x 3 £1572.48
Accessible picnic bench £238.67
Gym Equipment and ground anchor £3956.74
Teen Area and Interactive play board £6648.98
Storage Box and sleepers £1022.76
Safer Surfacing ( Artificial grass and Wet pour all groundwork's £17,280
Installation including all machinery concrete and muck away £8,492.56
Delivery of play equipment £2,581.65
Hobbit House ( including installation) safety panels, soil, £14,443
Creating an innovative model across the Frimley Health Trust.