Charity show gratitude to emergency workers as part of annual teddy bear donation

An organisation who have handed out tens of thousands of teddy bears to children facing emergency care treatment made a special visit to a hospital in Teesside today.

Freemasons and emergency care staff Freemasons from the Durham Province visited the paediatric emergency care department and the children’s ward at the University Hospital of North Tees.

As they do every year, representatives from the group left a bag filled with TLC bears, given by clinical staff to young patients to help alleviate distress.

The group also left staff a box of chocolates, vouchers for free coffees and lapel pin badges.

Play specialist in front of emergency care.It was also a chance for Mark Davies and Duncan Maw from the freemasons to thank hospital play specialist Dawn Taylor – for all of her help organising the teddy bear donation every year – before she retires in the coming weeks.

Duncan Maw, who manages the initiative, said: “To mark NHS, Social Care and Frontline Workers’ Day, we wanted to do something to say ‘thank you’ to Our NHS staff, while also remembering those NHS staff we have sadly lost.

“As we do every year, we also wanted to visit emergency care to donate more TLC teddy bears – which have proven so successful in taking children’s minds off things when they are being cared for.

“It was also our chance to thank Dawn for the fantastic help she has been in helping the organisation organise the donation of these teddy bears every year.”

Debbie Hall, nurse matron in emergency care, said: “Every year the freemasons visit to donate these teddies – they are so important in helping reduce any anxiety children may feel when coming to the department.

“This special visit this year – after what has been a very challenging last year – was so appreciated by everyone in the service. Thank you.”

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