Every moment a child spends in hospital is a moment they are missing from their childhood. For many of these patients, they are thrust into a world full of medical tests, procedures and treatment and forced to grow up well before they need to. That's why, this March, the Bandaged Bear Appeal is focussed on giving sick kids the best childhood possible.
The Bandaged Bear Appeal is the annual fundraiser for The Children's Hospital at Westmead and raises vital funds so doctors and nurses can give children the chance to spend more of their childhood with their family and friends and less time in hospital.
For patients like four-year-old Jacob this makes the world of difference.
Jacob spent more than 60 days in ICU last year after contracting a one-in-a-million viral condition that paralysed his left arm and diaphragm and left him with a severe spinal cord injury.
“As a parent, hearing that your child has a rare and irreversible medical condition that only affects one in a million children is hard to put into words. We felt alone, scared, confused; it was like a nightmare we couldn’t wake up from.” Jacob's mum, Sheryn said.
“But I can’t put into words how grateful I am for every single person who has been a part of Jacob’s journey at the Hospital. In what was the hardest part of our lives and what could have easily been a negative experience for us all, the team at Westmead have made so many positive memories for Jacob and our family.
This year, the Bandaged Bear Appeal is hoping to raise more than $1 million for kids like Jacob, which will go towards funding the very latest medical equipment, lifesaving research and essential services. But reaching this goal relies on the help of the community.
The Bandaged Bear Appeal will be officially launched on Friday 28 February with the iconic Bandaged Bear Day with volunteers selling merchandise at train stations and selected landmarks across Sydney. But that’s not the only way the community can get involved. Throughout March, the community can also:
- Buy merchandise online
- Order merchandise to sell themselves
- Register to hold a Bandaged Bear Picnic
- Make a donation by calling 1800 770 122 or visiting bandagedbear.org.au
Do your bit in 2020 to give childhood back to sick kids and raise funds for The Children’s Hospital at Westmead. Visit bandagedbear.org.au for more information, merchandise locations, recipe ideas, or to make a donation.