Since 2014, BtG has been working on a project to provide a hospital-based youth worker at Noble’s Hospital.
When BtG first approached Noble’s Hospital and the Youth Service with the proposition of funding this project, we had hoped that a room could be found within Noble’s, which could be equipped to create an age appropriate environment for teenage and young adult patients. Unfortunately, following a lengthy search, no room was found but an exciting solution has been agreed. BtG will gift a facility to Noble’s, known as ‘The Pod’, which will be built within one of the hospital’s existing courtyards.
Young people who are unwell often face repeated or extended inpatient stays and the charity will provide a relaxing environment for these patients, far removed from that of a clinical ward, which these young people can also visit when at Noble’s for scans/blood tests etc.
The facility will provide a space where young patients can take part in activities (crafts, games, watch TV or catch up on school/college work) as well as a space where they can meet with the youth worker. BtG hope that through this, young people will be able to connect with other young patients, other youth services and support which will help them feel less isolated by their condition.
Mike Quinn, Interim Director of Hospital Services, said: “We’re very grateful to Bridge the Gap for leading this initiative. The Pod will offer a unique space for teenage patients, giving them the chance to get away from a hospital environment during any visits or stays at Noble’s. A Hospital-based Youth Worker would represent a progressive step, enhancing the specialist support available to children and young people who need hospital care.”
Ken Callister, Principal Youth Officer with the Department of Education and Children said: “The Youth Service is committed to improving the social and emotional wellbeing of young people and for those with long term medical conditions this is especially important. Bridge the Gap has identified a very important need and between us all we have the chance to make a real difference.”
The cost of ‘The Pod’ is expected to be in the region of £50,000 so fundraising has begun in earnest. If funds allow, BtG would also like to develop a peaceful space within the courtyard.
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