Provide a Special Event

Thank you for your consideration and willingness to participate in a group program for our patients and families at Novant Health Hemby Children's Hospital. Our patients, families and team members are very appreciative of your support! We have developed our guidelines and processes to ensure all events, visits, and programs are safe and successful. We appreciate your cooperation in complying with our special events guidelines and requirements.

Please understand that our calendar of events for the patients are made at least one month in advance and are designed first and foremost to support our patients care and well-being. Overscheduling events and activities can lead to delayed recovery and outcomes. We will do our best to accommodate the visit at a mutually agreed upon time, but reserve the right to cancel or change the visit details after scheduling.

Recurring visitors will be required to participate in our Volunteer Services Training program and will be referred to this program as needed.

Guidelines and requirements for special events

Hemby Children's Hospital and St. Jude Affiliate Clinic require groups to meet several basic requirements in order to sponsor a special event at the hospital.

  1. Special event requests are made to the Child Life program by submitting the online application form.
  2. All groups are screened in advance by the Special Events Committee.
  3. A hospital representative will be assigned to host each group throughout the visit.
  4. All guests must be at least 15 years old, and 15 to 18 year olds must be chaperoned by an adult sponsor of their group.
  5. Group size is limited to four people so as not to be overwhelming to the patients.
  6. Please limit the length of events to 30 to 45 minutes.
  7. Create ways for patients of all abilities and ages to become actively involved.
  8. The activities must be well-planned and provide fun and entertainment for our patients. They should be long enough to make it worth the effort some patients have to go through to get out of bed with IVs, etc. These children are sick, and we never know how many will feel like coming to an event, but please don't let this discourage you. You can expect anywhere between two to 20 patients to attend most events. However, supplies should be available for the 50 in the hospital that day.
  9. Toys or favors will be screened in advance for safety and appropriateness. All items must be new. Please do not bring religious themed items, latex balloons, candles, knives, toy guns, water guns or other unsafe materials. Please avoid items that are small enough to go into a mouth or anything with small removable pieces (nothing smaller than a film canister). Please bring at least 50 items so there are enough for all patients and siblings.
  10. Media coverage of events is prohibited.
  11. Your group may not take photographs or videos during the visit due to patient confidentiality.
  12. The presentation should be religiously, politically, ethnically and culturally tolerant because we have patients from many different backgrounds. Presentations should not contain threatening themes such as death, medical procedures/personnel and illness.
  13. Any person exposed to contagious diseases (chicken pox, shingles, hepatitis, measles, mumps, pink eye, etc.) in the past four weeks or had flu-like symptoms (vomiting, rash, fever, diarrhea, etc.) in the past two weeks or fever of 100 degrees Fahrenheit on the day of the event is asked not to visit. For children with weak immune systems, even a cold can be life-threatening.
  14. Frequent hand washing is very important when working with patients. Please wash your hands for a minimum of 10 seconds using soap and water both before and after each patient contact.
  15. Proof of flu shot will be required October through April.
  16. Your interest and concern for our patients must be limited to the hospital visit. Please do not exchange phone numbers or addresses. Confidentiality is of utmost importance. Please do not make promises to a child, for you do not know if they can be fulfilled.
  17. Dress comfortably and appropriately for children in a hospital. No shorts, tank tops, low-cut blouses or sandals. If not dressed appropriately visitors will not be allowed to participate.
  18. Programs and events will be canceled if the group is more than 20 minutes late.

Things to keep in mind

  • Children who are hospitalized (and their families) may react differently than healthy children because they are coping with the stress of illness and hospitalization. Therefore, expressions of appreciation or affection may be restrained.
  • Approach children slowly and bend down to their level.
  • When greeting children and families, please share with them what group/organization you are with and why you are visiting.
  • Please use special care when you are around children with medical equipment.
  • Please refrain from asking questions regarding reasons for hospitalization, illness or personal circumstances. This is a HIPPA Policy surrounding protection for patient privacy.