Blowing bubbles, running around in superhero capes, painting and playing cards are all part of a new role in Mount Druitt Hospital’s Children’s Ward.
Eleanor Inskip, aged 20, has been appointed as the ward’s Play Therapist.
Her main objective, all day long, five days a week – is to make children smile through play and developmental activities.
Eleanor said play therapy is an effective way to make hospital a much happier place for young children by building positive and fun experiences.
“I don’t want kids to be afraid of going to hospital. It’s a place where you have a good experience because you will get better,” she said.
The concept of a play therapist aims to reduce stress, anxiety and boredom in children whilst in hospital. It also helps clinicians and nursing staff to perform medical procedures.
“I hold a certificate 3 in children’s services, which has helped me to provide developmental and education play with kids,” she said.
“Every child loves to play, and toys are their words. By the way a child plays I can build a picture of how they’re feeling and help them from there. It’s almost like counselling for kids.”
Eleanor now looks forward to completing her Early Child Teaching Degree and progressing to child life therapy in the near future.
Kelli Berstegen, mum of six from Windsor, had glowing reviews about Eleanor, while her child was being treated for bronchitis at the ward.
“Eleanor has provided all kinds of toys to keep my little one occupied, takes her for a walk and gives her cuddles,” she said.
“She’s had a really positive impact and she has eased my concerns too.
“Eleanor is awesome – so interactive with my child, so friendly and approachable.”