Sally Test Paediatric Centre
Hospitalization for children in Africa is a dreary and frightening experience - particularly in underfunded public hospitals. For children whose way of understanding the world is through play, there are no provisions for places or play equipment. Even in private settings where there may be cheerful settings, there are no provisions for child appropriate explanations of procedures they are to undergo or a sense of family centered care.
One outstanding exception to this description is found at the Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital (MTRH) in Eldoret, Kenya. During the last thirteen years a play program has grown into a robust Child Life program known as the Sally Test Paediatric Centre (STPC) - named for the donor who made our play room possible. MTRH, the second referral hospital in Kenya attends to over 6000 pediatric patients each year. We have happily watched children enjoy play at a stressful hospital environment.
Our objective is to make hospital experience less stressful for children and their families. Through our project young patients and their families will benefit through:
1. The playroom - is a large play area that will allow children able to leave their beds to a safe place to play and grow developmentally. Teachers will provide units of study, games, outdoor activities, dancing, stories and much more throughout the day. The Centre will provide joy and anticipation to many children's otherwise dull days. Children can access supervised activities from 10AM to 4PM daily.
2. Parent/caretakers - STPC will have planned activities for parents/caretakers of sick children. Indiana University and other visiting residents and medical students will continue to provide educational classes every Monday and Friday at the STPC playroom. Every other weekday, parents can learn how to sew from two machines donated by Purdue pharmacy students. Sewing will be supervised by our tailoring instructor. We will have Art projects which will be organized for parents of terminally ill children. Using beads, thread and recycled plastic bags, they learn to make products for sale. However, as they gather they are able to share and provide support among themselves.
3. Child Life Support - direct patient explanations to children in developmentally appropriate language about the reasons WHY procedures need to be done will be provided. Children will also be taught coping techniques to alleviate pain and distractions will be provided during procedures. Much instruction will take place in "medical play" where real medical instruments are used under supervision.
Free play supplies for a hospitalized child for one week.
This project can be visited on weekdays from 8.30am to 4pm. Please contact
Ernest at +254-0722-938-979 or email [email protected] for details and arrangements.
What To Bring
Pencils, pens, coloring books, crayons, toys, construction paper, tempera paints, games and puzzles
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