Everyone deserves a bit of joy at Easter, so on Monday 3 April Sydney’s Greenwood Early Learning Centres and Smiles2U brought the Easter Bunny to children staying at WISE Specialist Emergency Clinic, Northern Beaches Hospital and Royal North Shore Hospital.
Smiles2U create packages to deliver to children in hospital to keep them entertained and bring joy to their day. The packages can include activity books, little toys, teddy bears, stickers and colouring pencils but this Easter weekend Smiles2U is playing Easter Bunny.
Greenwood is part of the G8 Education network, one of Australia’s largest providers of early childhood education and care, focused on its purpose of creating the foundations for learning for life.
In the lead up to Easter, children at Greenwood Early Learning Centres across Sydney have been collecting Easter Eggs to donate to the local hospitals.
Greenwood Early Learning Centre Area Manager Rhiannon Nohra said that the centres wanted to give back to their community this Easter and collaborating with Smiles2U was a perfect way to get their children involved.
“Supporting these hospitals is very close to our heart as they’re the local hospitals for many of our children and families,” Ms Nohra said.
“In giving back this Easter, we wanted to encourage and teach our children to give back to their community. They found it very empowering to know that they are helping their peers, and the fact that they got to help them with chocolate was an added bonus.
“Our children have all been loving this experience! We hear them chatting about it to their parents in the foyer and one of our centres has even set up a station to make cards to go along with the Easter Eggs,” she said.
Smiles2U Founder Michelle Key said that aligning themselves with an established company like Greenwood Early Learning Centres was a brilliant opportunity.
“We’ve been overwhelmed by the number of eggs donated by the Greenwood Early Learning Centres,” Ms Key said.
“Smiles2U is a registered charity. We have no corporate sponsorships and rely solely on donations so receiving this support from Greenwood Early Learning Centre’s is so appreciated.
“Smiles2U was created by a group of mums because we all had experience of our children being in hospital. We know that a lot of patience, distraction and ideas are needed to keep a young child comfortable in hospital, so we try to ease the burden with our packs.
“Families are always so amazed and overwhelmed when they receive our packages. It makes all the hard work we do worth it knowing the difference we have made for them in a place no one wants to be.”
Smiles2U supports 13 hospitals with care packages, smiles bags, cancer care packs and comfort for those who find themselves in hospitals unexpectedly.
If you would like to donate to Smiles2U, head to the Smiles2U website where you can donate or pay it forward by buying a bag of their Easter gingerbread.