Story cubes have been donated to Walsall Manor Hospital’s Children’s Ward by the grateful family of a much-loved former patient who died earlier this year.
Daniel Meredith, who had very complex needs, was regularly treated on the ward. He was born at 27 weeks and suffered trauma to his brain and damage to his pituitary gland.
He was registered blind and due to the damage to his brain could not move freely and needed to use a wheelchair.
Daniel also had cerebral palsy, epilepsy and chronic lung disease among many other health problems.
After contracting COVID-19, Daniel sadly died on 27 April this year, aged seven.
His family wanted to give something back to the hospital after all staff had done for him over the years.
From donations made at Daniel’s celebration of life, his mum Sara and his dad Alan, along with his sisters Kennedy, Eden and Brodie were able to buy four Tonieboxes and more than 20 Tonies which are innovative audio players for listening to audio books, music or educational stories.
Sara said: “We asked for donations for the ward because Daniel loved stories and also loved his nurses.
“It felt right that the donations were used for a place which had done so much for him. The money donated was from family and friends who loved Daniel.
“We hope that the Tonieboxes will bring comfort to the children that have to be in hospital and maybe brighten their day or bring them comfort. Stories can do all that and Daniel especially loved his stories.
“We had a little smile when we brought the Disney Tonies as Daniel hated Disney and he used to tease his favourite nurse Emma Whitehouse about it, their banter was hilarious.”
She added: “Losing Daniel has broken our hearts, but we do take comfort in knowing that Daniel’s memory has brought and will bring comfort and joy to other children.
“It wasn’t easy dropping them off at the ward, the corridors echo with memories of my beautiful boy. Alan and I will always be grateful for the care, support and love we have received from all in the paediatric department, they are special people.”
Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust Play Specialists Sam Deane and Emma Lester both said: “Sara does a lot for us, it doesn’t go unnoticed. These donations are so thoughtful and keep Daniel’s memory alive. All the children and parents who come on to our ward will now know who Daniel was. We miss him dearly and send our love to Sara and his family.”
Sara also nominated the Children’s Ward to receive care packages from the Advocates and Angels charity. This charity helps parent carers navigate the world of disabilities, hospital admissions, palliative care and bereavement.