Children in hospital for an operation have been racing to theatre with a big smile rather than feeling anxious – all thanks to a fleet of cars donated by MyLahore.

The push-along cars have proved a big hit among small children who are normally tearful and anxious as they walk to the operating theatre. Instead, hospital play specialists have been able to push the youngsters through the hospital in the mini cars donated by the Bradford-based restaurant chain MyLahore.

The idea for the donation came after MyLahore director Ishfaq Farooq was in hospital with his little boy for a minor operation. He saw a fellow patient pushed down to theatre in a toy car, but when he asked to use one, he was told that unfortunately they only had one and it was still down at the operating theatre. He decided to fund six more cars to ensure there is one for every child wishing to use one.

“It’s items such as these which have such an amazing impact. It makes hospital less scary for the children, because they don’t know what’s happening,” said Ishfaq. “It’s these little things which make a big difference.”

While two cars have gone to the Day Case Unit at Bradford Royal Infirmary, for children to use when they go to theatre, two have gone to the Radiology department for staff to push children to their scans, and two have found a home in the children’s ward, for children receiving in-patient treatment.

Jeanette Sunderland, Play Specialist on the Day Case Unit, said: “When it’s time to go to theatre, we take the child to a room where they get to choose one of the vehicles which MyLahore donated. They sit in the car and get happily pushed down to theatre, which gives them a much better experience. It’s fantastic for the children.”

Senior Sister Claire Hall said: “A big thank you to MyLahore for donating these wonderful vehicles to our children. Not only do they help the children have a positive experience on the ward, but it gives the parents reassurance that we’re doing what we can to support them.”

Alison Kay, Play Specialist in the Children and Young People’s Unit at Bradford Royal Infirmary, said the cars had proved extremely popular among children and parents alike.

“We hardly see them in the play room because they’re always out and about being used!” she said.

Six-year-old Rayyan Shaban was happily wheeled down to theatre for his tonsillectomy. His dad, Zaman Shaban, said: “He absolutely loved the car.”

Philippa Nall, who was in hospital with her three-year-old son Sam, said: “It’s a great idea to have the cars – such a good distraction. Sam was so busy trying to steer his car that he was happy going down to theatre.”

Sharon Milner, Director of Bradford Hospitals’ Charity, said: “Ishfaq’s story about why he wanted to donate the cars is so heart-warming. Our children absolutely love going down to theatre now, and there’s plenty of cars to share round.

“MyLahore has been incredibly supportive, for which we’re incredibly grateful. As one of the founding members of our 100 Club, they have been instrumental in helping us fund special projects across our hospitals which mean our patients have a gold standard of service and our staff are supported. We rely on local businesses such as MyLahore to ensure items such as the cars, as well as large-scale projects which are not routinely provided by the NHS, are funded.”

Any businesses interested in the Bradford Hospitals’ Charity 100 Club can find out more at https://bradfordhospitalscharity.org/the-100-club/

Rayyan

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