Bags and bags of Bags!
We were absolutely delighted to get back into the office, post lockdown and immediately got in touch with the wards that we have long term relationships with, but also some brand new paediatric oncology wards, to see if they'd like our bags. We reached out to 6 units and it was a resounding YES, PLEASE! from all of them!
So back in August, we commenced a full stock take and then placed the BIGGEST order of stock that we have EVER placed. The whole of August was a busy rush of orders, deliveries and logistics. We then headed into September, where we worked out a way of packing the bags in a COVID safe manner.
The first bag pack in our new office, and the biggest bag pack we've ever done! An incredible 810 bags were packed over 4 Monday's, and our office became a sea of bags. We couldn't move for our bags of wonder, and the office was awash with colour from the beautiful (and very full) bags!
We were determined to get the bags to the wards by the end of September, and we just about managed it. With the help of one of our dedicated volunteers, he and I headed off on two days of mammoth road trips (donning masks and gloves and hand sanitized) and delivered the first of the bags to Nottingham Children's Hospital, Sheffield Children's Hospital and Leeds Children's Hospital on day one. We are so happy to introduce Nottingham and Sheffield to our list of new units.
Day two saw us take a trip down the M6 to Royal Manchester Children's Hospital and then nip across the M62 to Alder Hey, in Liverpool. Two days of early starts and long days, and a HUGE 322 bags donated to these 5 units. Due to the limited storage space in the hospitals, we are holding bags at the office for some of the hospitals, so they are able to let us know when they're running low on the bags we took this week and we will get more down to them.
In a couple of weeks we will deliver the remainder to Great North Children's Hospital in Newcastle. And, in another first, we have a small number of bags for Cumbria's Paediatric Community Nursing team to collect to take to the children they care for in their own homes.
It is such a great feeling to be using the office for it's intended purpose at last, and to have not only resumed our bag project, but to have expanded it already. And what a statement we can now make: WE HAVE OUR BAGS IN EVERY PAEDIATRIC ONCOLOGY WARD IN THE NORTH OF ENGLAND!!!!!!!! What's more, but we are now working in A THIRD of the paediatric oncology wards in the whole of mainland Britain. What a feeling! What an achievement! Overjoyed!
A huge thank you to everyone that has donated, to make this possible. And a huge thank you to our bag packing heroes and our superstar man with a van!
Can you tell I'm a bit excited to be back with our bags!
It was so good to back, and to hear the play teams tell us how appreciative they are and what a difference the bags will make, especially at the moment given the challenges they are facing. It's fair to share that these play therapists are angels. A better bunch of humans, you will never meet.
We couldn't provide these bags without the support of every single one of you. Our appreciation knows no bounds. We are eternally grateful for every penny and every item donated. Let's not stop here! Donations will always be gratefully accepted, as will all other forms of support! So if you can help us continue to maintain and expand our bag projects, get in touch!