Students bring festive cheer to stroke patients

Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust’s stroke unit (JASRU) welcomed students from Newcastle College to bring some festive cheer to patients and staff on the ward.

It was a lovely morning for patients to get together and listen to the students singing Christmas carols. The performing arts group is completing a one-year programme and this was an opportunity for them to perform their Christmas show to our patients.

Vicki Burn, Performing Arts Course Leader said, “The students were excited to be at the hospital, they have never done anything like this before. We put together some Christmas songs to perform for patients and staff. This is a great opportunity for us all.”

Bringing festive cheer to the ward has boosted patient morale and kept them involved in normal activities, which has a huge therapeutic benefit. Ruth Da Silva, Clinical Specialist Occupational Therapist talks about the impact activities like this can have on stroke patients, “On the ward, we encourage different activities to keep the patients engaged.

“Stoke patients can be on the ward for a long time and there is evidence to show the benefit of singing and music which is good for their mood.”

The patients got involved, sang along to carols, and enjoyed doing normal seasonal activities despite being in the hospital. It was a chance for staff to take a break, enjoy the festive cheer with patients, and take some time out together as team.

A huge thank you to Fiona Lewis, discharge coordinator, and her sister Caroline Smith, Ambassador for Good for me, Good for Further Education for coming together and organising such a meaningful event. Thank you to Greggs for donating mince pies and Noda Taxis for transporting the students to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital free of charge.

Newcastle college students
Newcastle College students