Nottingham University Hospitals Trust (NUH) has been chosen as the fourth hospital Trust to receive charity bags that will be given out to children and families when they receive their first cancer diagnosis.
Milly’s Smiles is a charity set up by mum, Lorraine Wilson, whose daughter passed away from cancer in 2015.
Whilst spending time at Manchester Children’s Hospital, Lorraine noticed that families, just like hers, were being admitted to the hospital with no possessions with them, as they did not know what to expect.
She added: “After I lost Milly, I wanted to do something. I wanted to keep her name alive.”
Lorraine set up Milly’s Smiles, a charity that provides a bag for families that are admitted to hospital. It started at Manchester Children’s Hospital and has since gone on to Alder Hey, Leeds Children’s Hospitals and now Nottingham.
20 bags were donated to Nottingham Children’s Hospital on 19 June.
When asked, why Nottingham? Lorraine said “We follow the hospital on social media and it seemed like a really nice fit. I’ve heard that Nottingham is a nice place and there is a nice feel to the hospital.”
Inside the blue holdall bag, there is a rainbow blanket – to stop the bed from “looking clinical,” a notepad and pen to write down information on the initial admission, a beanie hat, a towel, a clear water bottle, a thermometer, neck pillow, toiletries, jelly babies, thermal flask and a rainbow elephant teddy.
Joanne Smallman, Ward Sister at the Children’s Hospital said “I feel like the families receiving the bags will be blown away. It will really help families during what will be some of the most difficult times in their lives. Milly’s Smiles have thought of everything! You can really tell it’s been put together by someone who has gone through it because it’s so well put together.”
Each of Milly’s Smiles bags cost £140 to make up, funded through fundraising events such as afternoon teas, charity balls, run events, sponsored walks, family fun days, cake sales, tombola’s, raffles and car boot sales.
Lorraine added. “I can’t believe that from something that started in my garage, we are now supporting the fourth hospital. I know my daughter would’ve been proud of us.”
If you wish to donate please visit – www.millyssmiles.org