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26 September 2017

WATCh teddy bears comfort children and families during difficult times

The Wales & West Acute Transport for Children team (WATCh) provide critical care, advice and transport for children to all district general hospitals across South Wales and South West of England.

Recently, the team received a kind donation of teddy bears, to give to the children they transfer. The team wanted to add a personal touch to these cuddly gifts, so WATCh nurse Carrie got in touch with the 'Knitter and Natter' group at Downend library, to see if they'd be able to help.

WATCh bears

Carrie said: "I knew the 'Knitter and Natter' group  really like supporting  local causes, and have in the past helped NICU at St Michael's Hospital fundraise for Cots for Tots, knitting blanket, hats and teddy bears. 

"They were delighted to help the WATCh team by knitting special jumpers for the teddy bears, knowing they will be helping children and their families during a very difficult and emotional time. 

"We have been thrilled with how the jumpers have turned out and that they are being so well received."

One patient who already has her own WATCh bear is 13 month old Emilia.

WATCh bear - Emilia

Emilia's mother explains: "Emilia has spinal muscular atrophy, a neuromuscular disease which makes her muscles very weak.

"She was first transported by WATCh when she was six months old, following a collapsed lung that needed to be treated at the paediatric intensive care unit (PICU).

"She needs transporting to and from Bristol to receive specialist treatment for her condition that isn't available in her local hospital.

"The WATCh team provide a smooth and safe transfer, ensuring her complex needs are met.

"The bear is a lovely gesture and something for Emilia to keep and remember the people who helped her so frequently when she needed them.

"We'd like to thank WATCh, the PICU team and the ward 30B High Dependency Unit team, for all their hard work and dedication to getting Emilia well and on her journey home."