Media release:

Everyone can help Radio Lollipop and the sick children in hospitals around the world

What people say about us:

“Radio Lollipop is not a frilly add-on. It is really helpful clinically – a calm child recovers better …every member of staff and parent and child think it is fantastic…”
Madeline Ismach, 2007
Head of Psychosocial Services, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, London.

Our Mission:

Radio Lollipop is an international children’s charity providing care, comfort, play and entertainment to sick children in hospital.

Our Vision:

To reach every child in hospital – anywhere, any time

Our History:

The Radio Lollipop service was founded in the UK in 1979 as a one-off project.

After more than thirty years as an entirely volunteer organisation Radio Lollipop has grown to include over 10,000 volunteers operating 26 hospital radio stations in 5 countries. We also operate satellite stations in a number of suburban/regional hospitals.

Since 1979 Radio Lollipop volunteers have directly helped nearly 5 million sick children in hospitals and reached over 13 million people worldwide.

Our Objectives:

To provide care, comfort play and entertainment for children in hospitals everywhere.

Our Opportunities:

Modern hospital design is focusing on providing single-bed rooms. This further isolates children and underscores the growing and continued need for Radio Lollipop and our play volunteers to help sick children connect to the world outside their rooms.

  1. To achieve our vision of reaching every child, everywhere we need to be flexible. We can deliver Radio Lollipop in a number of ways:
    1. Radio Lollipop Full service; an in-hospital radio station plus volunteers for ward visiting and one-to-one play with the children.
    2. Radio Lollipop Lite; a limited broadcast capability plus volunteers for ward visiting and one-to-one play with the children.
    3. Radio Lollipop Local; A satellite broadcast service plus volunteers for ward visiting and one-to-one play with the children.
  2. New Stations; We currently have numerous requests from children’s hospitals around the globe to create new Radio Lollipop services in their hospitals. We can realise these requests with your help

Evidence we make a difference:

We know we make a real difference. We see it every day in the smiles of the children and families we help. However, it is gratifying to have this endorsed by formal research and reports from our Children’s Hospital partners.

Children’s Hospital Orange County California USA (CHOC);
A 2009 Study undertaken at Children’s Hospital Orange County in USA found;
After the Radio Lollipop activity, children reported a significant decrease in overall anxiety with the greatest reduction coming in the area of worry.
Analyses of (FACES) scores revealed a significant reduction in perceived pain after the program.

Princess Margaret Hospital Perth, Western Australia;
Postgraduate research reported an 82% reduction in request for pain-killing drugs after Radio Lollipop involvement.

Mater Children’s hospital Brisbane Qld, Australia;
In 1990 the Mater Children’s Hospital reported saving over $400,000 in un-administered drugs after the first year of Radio Lollipop operation.

Our Challenges:

Resources: Once a Radio Lollipop station is established, it doesn’t take much money to keep it operating. Therefore we tend to be a very frugal, low maintenance volunteer operation. As a result we have distinct limitations. However, despite this we have managed to steadily grow over the past 33 years.

  1. Capability: As a volunteer based organisation we just don’t have the capacity to realise all our opportunities without the generous help and support of community, business and charitable organisations. The sick children in your local hospital will welcome your support too.
  2. Quality – we will not compromise the quality of our service and delivery for the sake of growth. We are focused at delivering a quality service to the sick children. We do it properly, or we don’t do it.

Our issues:

Lack of resources – Most of our existing resource is focused at our current operations and locations. We have limited extra fund-raising capacity and what we have is always concentrated at maintaining each existing station. We welcome your help.

  1. Focus – Volunteers can only give so much. Their focus is on their local service delivery. So a larger pool of volunteers is always welcome. If you are interested in learning to be a radio announcer we will train you. But you don’t have to be a radio announcer – we will also teach you how to be a great play buddy to the kids in hospital.
  2. Limited ability & resources to meet the requests/demands from hospitals around the world requesting our service. We would love to team up with you or your organisation to help us create the resources and volunteers needed to deliver Radio Lollipop smiles to the sick children in all the hospitals that request our service.

For further information please contact:

Hedley Finn MBE
Radio Lollipop UK

Bruce Uhlhorn
Chairman Radio Lollipop International Limited
Radio Lollipop Australia

Debbie Prout
Radio Lollipop USA

Bil Hawley
Radio Lollipop New Zealand

Damian Boyce
Radio Lollipop South Africa

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