Variety, the Children’s Charity has partnered with businesses and charities across Yorkshire to support a major £75,000 makeover which will enable thousands more children to be treated at Harrogate District Hospital’s Paediatric Outpatient Department.

Of the total raised £25,000 came from Variety supporters to refurbish the department, crucially building two new consulting rooms which will enable the department, over time, to increase the 9,000 patients it currently treats to 15,000. Infants and children up to 16 will also benefit from additional specialist nurse clinics and a more welcoming, interactive and child-friendly waiting area.

As part of the development, Variety also raised an additional £33,000 for a lifesaving transport incubator, enabling babies to access specialist medical care.

Charlotte Farrington, Regional Development Director for Yorkshire commented:

“Variety built this department in 1993 and we are delighted to have played a key part in its refurbishment 25 years on. I would like to thank everyone for their generous donations, in particular, those who attended the Crystal Fundraising Event in 2016.”

The refurbishment has been driven by Harrogate Hospital & Community Charity, which raises funds to enhance all departments and community services at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust. The Rainbow Fund, The League of Friends for Ripon Hospital, The Friends of Harrogate Hospital & Community Charity and The White Stuff Foundation have all contributed to the project. Business support has come from Synergy Car Leasing, Altro, StudioOne, along with local retail and individual donors.

Jennifer Kemp, Paediatrics Department Manager, said:

“We have been thrilled that such a varied mix of people have chosen to support us and enabled us to directly support many more children than we could otherwise have done and that’s what’s so important. For some children it means they no longer need to travel to Leeds. A special mention goes to The Rainbow Fund who launched the project and engaged so many local people, companies and our wider community.

Wide-ranging benefits for patients also include a new specialist nurse who can treat epilepsy sufferers who currently have to travel to Leeds. Additional services span a Special Care Baby Unit follow-up clinic, an additional diabetes clinic and an Ophthalmology provision for children with special needs.”

Dr Ros Tolcher, Chief Executive at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“I am delighted that the overwhelming generosity of local businesses and local people has enabled us to transform our Children’s Outpatient Department here at Harrogate District Hospital. It is such a welcoming, modern environment that we’re all really proud of and will help us continue to provide high quality patient care.”