Children who visit the Orthotics department at Oswestry’s specialist orthopaedic hospital are now feeling less stressed during their appointments, thanks to a generous donation of teddy bears from Teddies for Loving Care (TLC) by Shropshire Freemasons, in collaboration with the League of Friends.

The Department of Orthotics at The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital help treat and rehabilitate patients by providing orthoses to aid movement, correct deformities and relieve comfort.

Orthoses are produced by the Orthotics Production and Manufacturing Team at the Oswestry-based hospital.

Ben Parrish, Orthotics Technician Supervisor, said: “We offer all children who require an orthosis the opportunity to select the design they would like printed on their device – whether they want a favourite character or a colourful pattern.

“We used one of the teddies to create moulds for both leg and spinal orthoses meaning that all children can receive a bear with matching device during their fitting appointment.”

The League of Friends at RJAH connected the Orthotics Team with the Shropshire Freemasons, who work with TLC, to provide teddy bears to hospitals for staff, at their discretion, to give to children.

Jane Dewsbury, Orthotic Services Manager, said: “We’re delighted to be working with TLC, the Shropshire Freemasons and League of Friends to give our paediatric patients some comfort during a stressful time.

“Attending hospital appointments can be an anxious situation for children and these teddies are already proving to work effectively as a distraction technique.

“The children absolutely love the bears when they receive one, and the scheme is also helping staff build a positive relationship with the child and their parents, which is vital.”

TLC is run by volunteer Freemasons. Freemasons in Shropshire raise the money needed to provide teddies to hospitals, minor injuries units and hospices in Shropshire.