Play is an important part of every child’s life — it is the way they learn about the world.
During times of stress, such as hospitalization or medical treatment, play, music, art and other activity can provide a safe and familiar outlet for a child’s or teen’s emotions.
Jayci Brauman, now 13 years old, has understood this since she was a young girl. In 2011, Jayci began an art cart supply drive for the patients and their siblings at Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children.
“I started this drive in 2011 because of a baby named Carver”, says Jayci. “He had a heart condition and he died when he was only a few days old. At his funeral people were asked to donate coloring books for the hospital. This gave me an idea. I decided to gather supplies for Arnold Palmer Hospital so that kids can enjoy an art project while they are in the hospital or waiting to go into surgery.”
In the last six years, Jayci, with help from her Mom, Kim Brauman, have never failed to support the Child Life team at Arnold Palmer Hospital with their donation. Day in and day out, child life specialists use the art donations to encourage play with patients and help keep their mind off of their illness and/or surgery.
“I think it is important for kids to give back to each other because there are not a lot of things kids can do to help each other. When kids give back it makes the people who receive the gifts feel special and they know that other people care about them.”, says Jayci.
Want to help?
Donated toys, such as puzzles, games and creative art materials, provide a much-needed form of distraction for our patients. Each floor of the hospital has a playroom where children are encouraged to spend time just being kids — even though they’re in the hospital. Our Child Life Team works with each patient to exercise their creativity and stimulate their minds. Generous donations help us provide a great experience for each child and family. Visit us online at ArnoldPalmerHosptial.com/ChildLife to view our Toy Wish List.