Children’s kitchen idea launched at NNUH
A new children’s kitchen scheme has been set up on Buxton ward at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) to help with young patients’ recovery.
A unit and equipment have been provided where young patients can prepare food with Play Leaders who can then cook the items if required and the children can later decorate or garnish.
The idea came from Debbie Jones, Serco’s Customer Support Manager for Patient Catering at NNUH, who said: “It’s a simple idea but it makes a big difference to the children and the Play Leaders are so excited about it and how it can benefit the children.
“There is a food preparation area and a convection microwave built for purpose in Coltishall ward kitchen. The Play Leaders are then able to cook the cookies, pizzas or cakes etc which the children can then decorate if required or just eat them!
“A girl on the ward recently made some chocolate cookies and was so pleased – she gave some to the staff. It made her day!”
Ward sister Teresa Miles said: “This initiative will be an invaluable service as it allows children to choose the times they would like to eat, helps them be involved with their own food preparation, as well as providing an education about the foods they choose.
“Often, children want to eat at different times from the usual meal times in hospital, for all sorts of reasons, being post op, or perhaps feeling unwell. So to be able to offer them snacks throughout the day, which they can help prepare, will undoubtedly help their recovery processes.”
Play Leader Jade White is a big fan of the new initiative: “It brings some fun to the ward,” she said. “Every kid loves cooking. It’s a really nice group activity or we can make it one to one.”
Recipe ideas are discussed with the children who want to take part and then the food is prepared the next day.
Debbie explained how she came up with the initiative: “I had the idea a while ago when a child patient wanted to make his own food but couldn’t.”
Play Leaders have now had food safety training, and the scheme has started.