MK Dons players and staff put on their best Santa Claus impressions to visit the children at Milton Keynes General Hospital on Thursday afternoon.
Skipper Dean Lewington, David Martin, Lee Hodson and Tom Flanagan were joined by assistant manager Gary Waddock and goalkeeping coach Paul Heald in the Dons’ annual visit to the Hospital’s children’s ward. They were also joined by Leo the Lion from the Hospital’s Leo Appeal.
As is now tradition at MK1, the players donated money for presents to personally deliver to the children. The Club worked with Milton Keynes’ Toys R Us branch to ensure everyone on the ward would be given a present on the day of the visit – including arts and craft materials, books, cars, My Little Pony and more.
A number of the gifts were bought to remain on the ward to ensure any children visiting now, over Christmas and in the future will be able to make their time in hospital a little easier. The players delivered toy cars, dolls, a baby walker, mp3 players, a video camera, board and car games plus much, much more for the children’s ward.
On top of the toys, games, books and tricks the Dons were able to handover a Google Nexus 7 Tablet thanks to Club Partners Misco donating the computer device to the ward. The device will allow the Hospital to access certain games and applications which will provide development to the children but will also help keep the kids occupied during tougher times.
Alison Turner, Ward Manager on the children’s ward said: “A tablet will be extremely useful on the children’s ward and we will be using it in our treatment rooms. We have a lot of young patients who need to have painful procedures, and so a tablet will be used for distraction therapy to help take their minds off the pain”.
Jenny Howells, Fundraising Officer for the Milton Keynes Hospital said: “I am very grateful to the generosity of Misco, who have kindly donated a tablet to the children’s ward. This will make a huge difference to the young patients on the ward, and help make their stay with us that little bit easier.”
Simone Corgan, Head of Media Relations at MK Dons added: “The players’ annual visit to the children’s ward is a special occasion for the Football Club. We would like to place on record our thanks to Toys R Us, who helped with the shopping and allowed the money to stretch even further, and to our Club Partners Misco for their donation. Both companies have provided fantastic support to the Club and have hopefully helped spread some Christmas cheer to the children and families who need it most at this time of year.”
As well as handing out the presents, the players and staff were able to lift the spirits of the parents and nursing staff too by posing for photos, signing autographs and chatting about all things football, toys and Christmas!