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play specialists

High Atlas Mountains Morocco

Mount Toubkal Trek 2023

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This tough but incredibly rewarding challenge combines the unforgettable scenery of the High Atlas Mountains with the splendour and colour of Marrakech. You will find yourself climbing and scrambling over the huge boulders and rocks of northern Africa’s tallest peak – Jebel Toubkal, standing at a whopping 4,167m.

It is an experience not to be missed and as part of the trek, you will…

  • Experience the unforgettable mountain scenery and spectacular views
  • Tackle daunting peaks dotted with Berber villages
  • Summit Jebel Toubkal, Morocco’s highest mountain
  • Push yourself mentally and physically at high altitude
  • Get lost in the colourful souks of mystical Marrakech

High Atlas Mountains Morocco“There is nothing more inspiring than the view from the high Atlas Mountains. It can make you believe if you can do this you can do anything.”

By joining our team of intrepid explorers and fundraising for us, you’ll be helping to bring joy and laughter to seriously ill children and young people during one of the most difficult times of their lives.

To secure one of our limited places or with any queries, please email Amanda to sign up today.

 

Event date: Tuesday 16th May – Sunday 21st May 2023

Minimum fundraising: £850

Expedition costs: £1,055 (Direct to Charity Challenge our trek Partners)

What’s included? International flights to and from the UK, accomodation, drinking water and 3 meals a day included, full back up support. Full details.

An itinerary and information around what to expect can be found here.

LEGO Masterclass

LEGO Masterclass

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We’ve been sparking creative imaginations in our first joint venture with the LEGO Group!

Last week we were delighted to welcome 11 patients and their families for a LEGO Masterclass as part of the LEGO Group’s ‘Build the Change’ program.

Build the Change encourages children to express their hopes and dreams for the future through LEGO® bricks and a bit of imagination. Following our theme of ‘Playful City’, the children created their own buildings and hospitals showing how they would brighten and develop the spaces around them.

It was such an engaging day providing a chance to relax, have fun and create through play. Spread a Smile’s Mr Magic was also on hand to spread even more smiles through magic!

A huge thank you to the LEGO Group for their support and time. Also to our friends Lolas Cupcakes for donating the tasty treats and to Dominoes pizza for their support.

Dr Alex George

Visit with Dr Alex George

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We were honoured to welcome Dr Alex George along to one of our visits to University College London Hospital last Friday, where he met patients and staff on the Oncology and general paediatric wards.

Dr Alex is an A&E and TV Doctor and a UK Youth Mental Health Ambassador within the Department of Education, known for his campaigning around mental health education.

Physical and mental health and wellbeing are both extremely important when battling and recovering from illness. Spread a Smile is dedicated to improving wellbeing and quality of life for the seriously ill children and young people we support.

Dr Alex spoke in depth with a number of patients, listening to their questions and sharing advice for managing the challenges they face.

Dr Alex George and StaffWe’re so grateful to Dr Alex for giving up his time to join us on the wards. Both patients and staff benefitted hugely from his presence and having the chance to talk, for which we can’t thank him enough.

“I loved meeting all the young people on the wards. I feel humbled by your stories. Your strength in the face of adversity is incredible. Big thanks to the team at Spread a Smile who visit the children and bring a moment of joy, even amongst the worry and sadness.” Dr Alex George

Spread a Smile Christmas Gifts

Christmas gifts needed

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Can you help Spread a Smile this Christmas? For the seriously ill children and young people we support, Christmas can be a difficult time, spent in hospital away from the comforts of home.

Each year Spread a Smile helps bring back the magic of Christmas. From our Santa’s Grotto, festive art sessions and the thousands of gifts we deliver to wards and homes, we spread joy at a time when a smile is needed most.

To do this, we need the support of generous businesses and individuals to donate gifts and treats for our gift packages. Last year we sent around 2,500 gifts out to our hospital partners. This year we are aiming for 3,000!

If your business can help, or you could put us in touch with one who might, please email the team at fundraising@spreadasmile.org We are looking for items suitable for children of all ages and need more than 4,000 small and medium sized gifts.

You can find inspiration for the type of gifts we need or even buy an individual gift for a child via our Amazon gift list. Examples are:

  • Baby toys
  • Sensory toys
  • Soft toys
  • Books
  • Paints
  • Puzzles
  • Games
  • Makeup
  • Toiletries (Teenagers)

A huge thank you to the individuals and companies who have donated gifts so far, including Acamar Films (BING Productions), Aurora World, Barry M, Big Potato Games, Bodil Jane, CASETiFY, Cheatwell Games, Derwent Art, Ginger Fox, Hasbro, Hunter Price International, IKEA Wembley, LUSH, MenKind, Moonpig, OTL Technologies, Over the Wall, Playmobil, Rainbow Designs, Spinmaster, Staedtler, Swizzels, The Fence Club and Wicked Uncle Toys.

We have lots planned this festive season to spread smiles far and wide, so please contact the team if you’d like to find out more about sponsoring any of our activities. Thank you.

Team Spread a Smile

Announcing four new hospital partners

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We are delighted to announce four new hospital partners, Barnet Hospital, Newham Hospital, Princess Alexandra Hospital and Watford General Hospital, bringing our total number of NHS partners to 25.

Our entertainers will be making monthly in-person visits to each of these hospitals and patients will also be invited to join our regular virtual visits and school holiday activities.

Their timing for joining the Spread a Smile family couldn’t be better as they are with us just in time to join our Christmas activities, including deliveries of Christmas gifts to all four sites.

At each hospital, we will be visiting patients on the inpatient wards and in outpatient departments including visiting patients during oncology clinics. Nurses and Play Specialists will also be able to request bespoke visits for children who are seriously unwell, allowing Spread a Smile to really make a difference when a child and their family most need a lift.

Helen Cripps, Play Specialist on Starfish Ward at Watford General Hospital said: “Spread a Smile has already had a huge impact to the Starfish Ward. Your lovely entertainers certainly cheer up all our patients and their families too and they are rays of sunshine! Their positivity really does rub off on all the patients they meet.

Spread a Smile artist Marina has painted an amazing mural in the Children’s Outpatients Department and has already started on a second mural. It makes the department so much more welcoming and cheerful. We love the Spread a Smile visits and look forward to them very much.”