Appeal launched to brighten up child cancer treatment area at Basildon Hospital

Mick Ferris

A fundraising appeal is hoping to make a real difference to children receiving cancer care at Basildon Hospital, by bringing a splash of colour to the treatment area.

The mission is to help transform the children’s oncology day unit from something drab into something fab, making it a more appealing place for children having five-hour blood transfusions.

The Penguin Day Unit is already open, but is in need of a child-friendly makeover to make the space a more welcoming, calming one for youngsters receiving blood transfusions and chemotherapy.

A total of £15,000 is needed to help fund furniture, drip stands, wall stickers, LED sensory lighting, iPads and DVD players to occupy children and keep them entertained while they receive their transfusions.

Michelle Bannister, paediatric oncology clinical nurse specialist at the unit, said they wanted to brighten up the area and make it more cheerful, and less clinical looking.

“At the moment, it isn’t very welcoming. Coming in to hospital can be really daunting for children, so developing this dedicated area that looks less clinical will help make it a more relaxed and calming environment for both children and their families. It’s an area they will be spending a lot of time in, so we want to make it as nice as possible for them.”

There are also plans to put an Arctic-themed mural on the wall, which children will be able to personalise by painting their own penguins when they visit.

Suzanne Reynolds, paediatric matron, said: “We hope that with kind donations we can also buy some new toys and entertainment to help distract children when having procedures such as blood transfusions and chemotherapy.”

If you would like more information about how you can help, or to donate, please contact the community fundraising team on 01702 385337 or email:


Mick Ferris

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