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"As a student of The English College in Prague, I was given an opportunity to come to London for work experience over the half term break. Being interested in charity work and setting up my own charity project in my school inspired me to apply for a job in a non-profit organization. I learnt about Theodora Children’s Charity for the first time from a classmate, who had volunteered there last year and had a really great time. I knew immediately that this would be a place I would love to volunteer at and learn more about how an English based charity is run.

On my first day, I learnt about the aims of Theodora Children’s Charity and how the Giggle Doctors help to create a relaxed and playful atmosphere in the sterile hospital environment. While volunteering in the office I was amazed by the dedication and excitement of the team to make children smile. The friendly and inclusive atmosphere in the office encouraged me to work hard on the research tasks I was given and do my best to fulfil them. Even though I found them quite challenging at the beginning, gradually I was able to try and experiment with various ways to acquire the data needed. This was particularly useful as I became aware of the value research work can have on addressing concerns connected to hospital care and the constant need on improving it.

Working for Theodora Children’s Charity was an extremely valuable experience as it gave a chance to become a part of the team who work hard to change children’s perception of doctors and hospitals. The idea of doing something as simple as making children and parents laugh during their difficult times in hospital is truly wonderful. Completing research on the role of laughter in hospitals made me realise how many benefits humour can bring into ordinary days spent in hospitals, not only to patients, but also their relatives and doctors. While filling in spreadsheets of Giggle Doctor hospital visits, I could see the passion and commitment they have to improve the mood of children and make their moments in the hospital more enjoyable.

After only one week in the office I was able to observe the huge impact Theodora Children’s Charity is making and will make on the lives of families and children across the country in the future."

Thank you Natalie for all of your hard work and the support you offered by volunteering. 

If you are interested in volunteering in our London office, please contact us at theodora.uk@theodora.org.