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A little girl dressed like an elf

Help the NHS with the WISHH National Elf Service

WISHH Charity launches help the NHS with the National Elf Service, to help sick children and medical elderly this Christmas.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, which is responsible for Hull Royal Infirmary and Castle Hill Hospital have to look at Christmas a little differently this year.  Traditionally, generous members of our community, businesses and sporting teams deliver an astonishing amount of Christmas gifts for the areas sickest children the hospitals care for.  To keep patients safe during the Covid-19 pandemic, the highest infection control procedures and restrictions on visiting loved ones are in place across the hospitals to prevent the spread of the virus.  Hull Hospitals in association with WISHH Charity are enabling our community to still help make a difference across our hospitals in a safe way by supporting our Christmas appeal.

Members of our communities who would like to help spread the festive cheer to patients Hull Hospitals care for over the festive period and beyond, are being encouraged this Christmas to “Help the NHS with the WISHH National Elf Service!” Appeal.

The WISHH Charity, has created a festive fundraising pack, bursting with creative ideas to get our community involved in, but at the same time observing Covid guidance, by taking part in socially distanced fundraising and at home fundraising ideas from sewing to baking, donning festive attire, to adopting one of our Christmas WISHHes, to spread the festive spirit safely in work places and schools by supporting the appeal. 

Donations and fundraisers can be set up online via the dedicated Just Giving page One-off online donations can also be made this way.  Donations to the appeal can also be made by sending a cheque made payable to “WISHH Charity”, and posted to WISHH Charity – National Elf Service Appeal, First Floor Administration Block, Castle Hill Hospital, Castle Road, Cottingham, HU16 5JQ. Writing on the back “National Elf Service”.

Funds raised from the appeal will enable the hospitals to purchase ‘Covid safe gifts’ for children of all ages from babies, toddlers, primary and secondary aged young people who will be staying on our wards over the Christmas period. Such support will also make a difference to patients being looked after in Children’s Emergency Department, Eye Hospital, Anlaby Suite and other specialist areas.  Any additional funds will be used to support patients across our hospitals throughout the year.

We will also be supporting our medical elderly patients, providing patients with reminiscence items for dementia patients and other items to make their stay in hospital more comfortable.

This is how your donations could help make a difference:

  • £10 will provide a patient with a toy or reminiscence gift
  • £15 will provide a patient with a mindfulness colouring book and pencil crayons
  • £20 will fund an Art/Crafts Bag – A take-home gift to encourage activities post discharge
  • £25 will provide a teddy bear for a vulnerable child who undergoes medical examination within the hospital
  • £100 – £500 will provide sensory items for our Eye Hospital for example bubble tubes and sensory boards
  • £250+ will provide a Santa sack of games and gifts for children on wards and for those patients with dementia
  • £1,000+ will enhance playroom learning toys and reminiscence areas on our wards for patients now and in future years.

Businesses which would like to support this appeal, please get in touch with Lisa Whitton on 01482 622299/07827 881766 or email

Beverley Geary, chief nurse for Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust says: “Members of our local community always go the extra mile at Christmastime to support patients, young and old, who find themselves in hospital; it’s one of the things that’s so great about Hull and the East Riding.

“We are always overwhelmed by the many offers of Christmas gifts and donations we receive, but this year, for the protection of our patients and to enable staff to focus on their care, we are having to do things a little differently.

“While we know people love to collect toys and gifts, we hope people will also understand that safety has to be our number one priority. That’s why, this year, we are asking people to make monetary donations to our hospital charity rather than donating physical gifts, so that we can coordinate Christmas surprises for our patients in a COVID-safe way ourselves.

“The WISHH Charity ‘National Elf Service Appeal’ provides plenty of ideas for ways in which individuals and community groups can still get involved and help us bring some festive cheer for patients spending time in hospital. We’d really encourage anyone who wants to do so to get involved in this way, and help us to keep our hospitals COVID-safe this Christmas.”

Lisa Whitton, WISHH Charity Manager said, “Covid-19 has dramatically impacted on everyone’s lives.  Our top priority as Hull Hospitals’ official charity, is to keep patients safe, and also to enable members of our community to help us spread the festive cheer to our paediatric and medical elderly patients through our “Help the NHS with the National Elf Service Appeal”.  We have already received calls from businesses and individuals asking about how they can support patients we care for at Hull Hospitals, by enabling members of our community to either make a donation or to become involved to raise funds to the appeal.  We look forward to sharing our festive ideas to inspire our community to brighten the lives of patients at Hull Hospitals.”

For further information call us 01482 622299 or email us at or follow us on all Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @WISHHcharity.