A visit or stay in the hospital can be nerve-wracking regardless of your age, but imagine how unsettling it must be for UCLA's youngest patients.
Intimidating medical procedures, unfamiliar surroundings, and new faces can be particularly stressful for children and adolescents. The Chase Child Life Program at the UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital helps our youngest patients cope with their fears and anxieties by offering therapeutic activities tailored to meet their social, emotional, and educational needs.
Our dedicated staff of 17 Child Life Specialists help young patients understand and cope more effectively with the overwhelming setting of the hospital.
These Chase Child Life Specialists inspire hope from children of all ages, as well as their families, during their stay at our hospital by providing access to age-appropriate developmental and therapeutic resources. Perhaps most importantly, the Chase Child Life Program allows children of all ages to have an opportunity to play, and to forget - even just for a moment - that they're in the hospital. Children use play to cope with confusing or stressful circumstances, such as extended stays in the hospital. Certain kinds of play can also be used to educate patients by teaching them about their diagnosis and positive coping methods for medical treatments and procedures.
Chase Child Life does not charge for its services.
Philanthropy plays a critical role in sustaining the Chase Child Life program and its flexibility to meet each patients unique needs, and enhances the overall experience of patients and their families during their time at UCLA Mattel Children's Hospital by making it as positive as possible.
In many cases, Child Life Specialists use medical play to teach children about their diagnosis or an upcoming treatment in an age-appropriate manner. This sort of medical play gives patients a sense of mastery and control over medical procedures and instruments, which helps to reduce anxiety and provide a level of comfort with the hospital environment.
However, play for fun's sake is just as important to our patients and their ability to heal, so we offer them personalized toys and experiences, music therapy, bedside play, art creation, and much more.
Keeping a child’s social development on track is also emphasized within the Chase Child Life program, even when patients have chronic illnesses and grow up in our hospital. Through group activities and special events in our playroom or designated room just for teens, Chase Child Life Specialists work to facilitate healthy interactions in friendly, non-stressful environments.
Donations to the Chase Child Life Program Fund support the greatest needs of the Child Life program at any given time. These needs can range from increased staffing to customized music or art therapy sessions, or specifically requested toys and bedside technology for older patients.
Because of limited space at UCLA Mattel Children's Hospital and very strict requirements for toy donations, the Chase Child Life Program kindly requests that potential donors consider giving directly to the Chase Child Life Program Fund. These funds allow us to purchase craft supplies, wish-list items that are specific to each patient, and teen technology, as well as fund different kinds of therapies on an as needed basis throughout the year.
Nearly half of the Child Life Specialists on our staff are funded through donor support alone.
If you're unsure about how much to donate, or about what kind of impact your donation can have, see the examples below.
We are grateful for the support of friends and community partners like you who partner with us do something extraordinary, every day. Donations ensure that we have the resources to create meaningful, happy memories for patients and their families during otherwise difficult times. Thank you in advance for your kindness, generosity, and for helping the Chase Child Life Program enhance the quality of the healthcare environment we provide to our patients.
If you do not wish to receive further fundraising information from UCLA Health Sciences, please either call us at (855) 364-6945 or email us at OptOutUCLAHSD@support.ucla.edu.