Kiwanis Club volunteers in Sparks have been making a difference at Renown’s Children’s Hospital ER for the past 13 years by crafting dolls to bring the children comfort and help with communication.
Sparks Kiwanis volunteers began the doll program in 2003 to bring comfort to children at Renown and help them communicate during their stay.
“We saw an article in Kiwanis Magazine about people all over the world making the dolls in Kiwanis Clubs everywhere from Luxemburg, to Japan, to Thailand, to Malaysia,” says Sparks Kiwanis Vice President Ellen Jacobson. “You pick a country, and there are Kiwanis Clubs there making them.”
Volunteers come together to make the plain muslin dolls and package them with magic markers. They are distributed to the Renown Children’s Hospital ER free distribution to children.
“It is amazing for the patients. They are very happy to receive them,” says Emergency Department Nurse Nikki Hunt, RN.
The nurses and child life specialists also use the dolls as tool to find out what is hurting or what may have happened to a child coming into the emergency department.
“We use the dolls to demonstrate and to let them anticipate what is coming. That this hospital is not a scary place. It is also fun just to color on the dolls,” Jacobson says.