The Runner Up for Starlight’s Health Play Specialist of the Year goes to Sue Marshall at Leeds Children’s Hospital.

Sue has over 28 years of experience working in hospitals and uses this experience to provide detailed and personal care to the children and their families who come through her ward. Sue helps the children adapt to their new environment by providing play and distraction to assist with their needs and help them adjust.

Sue is an incredibly patient and caring Play Specialist who assimilates herself into the children’s world so they can view her as a source of trust, comfort and safety during their time at the hospital.

When a child comes on to the ward, they look so nervous, once you’ve spent time with them, give them that prep that they need to make them feel comfortable and give them a sense of control, the benefits are amazing!

Sue on the importance of providing play and distraction to children in hospitals.

To help make what can often be a scary and confusing experience, Sue creates individualised plans and activities for each child she interacts with. Sue greets the children from the very first moment they walk through the ward’s doors with an individual folder that includes a bravery certificate scrap book for their hospital experience, ensuring each child feels special.

Starlight has helped Sue to provide opportunities of play and distraction for all the children who come through the hospital. With Starlight resources, Sue can cater to each child whether they are a teenager who likes to play cards, a child with special needs who needs access to sensory toys, or young children who love arts and crafts.

It is an honour to have been nominated for the Healthcare Play Specialist of the Year award and chosen as a Runner Up! I want to thank all my colleagues for all their support and their hard work and dedication they provide our patients and each other. We really are a fabulous play team!

Meet the other Play In Hospital Week 2021 winners and find out more about how we’re celebrating.