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Santa and his Elves brightened up the lives of the children at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin (OLCHC) today (Wednesday, 12 December 2012 at 11.15am).  Santa was the special guest at the launch of the hospital’s annual Ho Ho Day. Positive energy and sheer excitement pulsed through the corridors as news of the special visitors spread as Santa and his Elves made their way from ward to ward with presents.

Ho Ho Day is a special event organised annually by the Play Department and hospital staff to bring children, families and staff together to have a fun day to celebrate Christmas.  The day included fancy dress competitions for the best dressed staff member(s) and spot prizes for all the children.  The day was packed with fun events for the children such as Christmas carol singers (staff choir), face painting, dancing, National Concert Hall musicians and entertainment from our in house Clown Doctors. 

Speaking at the launch Deputy CEO and Director of Nursing at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin, Geraldine Regan said:

“I wish to thank Santa, Mrs Claus and all the Elves for there support in making today special and bringing a smile to all in hospital.  I wish to take this opportunity to thank all our families, staff, donors and friends of the hospital and wish you all a very Happy Christmas.  We particularly want to express our sincere thanks to the ERP and The Children’s Medical & Research Foundation who have generously sponsored our Christams activites.  Christmas time can sometimes be difficult for sick children in hospital.  The staff at Our Lady’s work hard to ensure each child who spends Christmas Day in hospital has a special experience.” 

European Recycling Platform (ERP) Ireland sponsored Santa’s Grotto at the hospital and their Operations Manager, Feargal Murray said:  “We are delighted that Santa and his elves could take time out of their busy schedules to bring a little festive cheer to sick children and their families this Christmas.  All of the children that have attended the ERP recycling Christmas events around the country have really enjoyed it and we are pleased to have brought the same holiday spirit to Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin.”

Lorcan Birthistle, Chief Executive of OLCHC says that around 100 very ill children will spend this Christmas in the hospital. “We try to get as many children as we can home for Christmas,” he said.  “Having a child with a serious illness puts a lot of strain on families, particularly at this time of year. That is why coming up to Christmas we try to have some fun in the hospital.  The hospital has organised many special events for the children for the month of December including a visit from Irish Celebrities on 19 December 2012 – the “Heinz Celebrity Ward Walk”. Children will have a special Christmas Day dinner cooked for them and Santa always drops by on Christmas Eve to give gifts to the children.”

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