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Laughter is the best medicine

Laughter is the best medicine

Friday 20 November 2020

Laughter is the best medicine

Four local charities have come together to recruit the unique services of the Giggle Doctors to make their care more comfortable.

The merry band of fictitious physicians, including doctors Hip Hap, Ding Dong and Bananas, will provide a range of online-led activities to children receiving care this month. They have been visiting children’s hospitals, hospices and specialist care centres with a combination of music, play and storytelling for over 25 years.

They were originally supposed to visit Guernsey in person this year, but lockdown forced them to postpone. Undeterred by the UK’s current lockdown, the charity has pulled out all of the stops to provide entertainment virtually.

“I am particularly proud and honoured to collaborate with the dedicated team of healthcare professionals in Guernsey,” said Andrè Poulie, who founded the Giggle Doctors with his brother Jan.

“I am so pleased, in this period of increased isolation and anxiety, to modestly offer a world of adventures and moments of joy to children in Guernsey. We are very thankful for the generous support which has enabled this to happen.

“Today, we initiate a virtual program which we shall in due course expand with the real thing, and long-lasting visits of our Giggle Doctors.”


Pictured: Dr Dovetail, providing the Giggle Doctors' unique brand of entertainment to a young patient.

The Poulie brothers founded the charity in memory of their mother, who passed away in 1994. They were inspired by the lengths she went to in order to lift Andre’s spirits while he underwent prolonged treatment in intensive care. Since its inception, the charity has brought joy and laughter to more than 500,000 children receiving care.

Guernsey’s partnership with the Giggle Doctors begins with 100 activity packs that will be made available to young children both in the PEH and receiving care in their own homes. These contain interactive games that can be completed with guidance from online videos that feature the Giggle Doctors.

Once they have completed all the activities, children receive a personal video call from one of the performers.

“We are lucky with the quality of healthcare we have in Guernsey, but undergoing treatment is always going to have its challenges, whatever the person’s age,” said HSC President Al Brouard.

“Anything we can do to make it more comfortable is very welcomed. The Giggle Doctors have a fantastically-fun track record in brightening up children’s healthcare with moments of joy and laughter.”

The partnership with the Giggle Doctors has been made possible by Ernie’s Angels, Friends of Frossard Children’s Ward, Dizzy Donkey and Jake’s Heartfelt Fund. Support was also received by Investec, Guernsey Tennis Club and the family and friends of Jane Sweet.

Pictured Top: Doctors Bungee and Teapot of the Giggle Doctors.

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