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Published Thursday 22 Feb 2018

The creatures of the Tree Hutt at Hutt hospital have a whole new host of friends, thanks to the Free Masons, Wellington District.

The TLC (teddies for loving care) project, sponsored by the Free Masons means that any child who has to come through the emergency department at Hutt Hospital will have a cuddly friend by their side while they are here and of course, can take their new teddy home with them once they are better.

“This is an on-going project. So far 2.5 million teddies have been given to children in the UK and we are thrilled to be able to trial
the programme here in New Zealand,” said Tony Mansfield of the Free Masons.

In addition to calming children down when they have to go through an experience in the emergency department, the teddies have also been designed as a diagnostic aid, allowing doctors to show where on teddy the child’s injuries/ illness might be.

“For example, if a child needed a bandage on their arm, the doctor can show them how they will bandage teddy first.”

He also thanked Fliway Logistics, who have offered to store and transport the teddies, free of charge.

Hutt Valley DHB chief executive Dale Oliff thanked the Free Masons for their help in making the experience of the emergency department a little less traumatic for children.

“We are absolutely delighted with the supportive work you do. We see a moment of magic when there is a positive interface between the parent, child and clinician. This initiative will really have a wonderful impact for the children we look after and we really appreciate you being part of that,” she said.

You can read more about the TLC project here .


Nico Beddis, 4, was thrilled to make a new friend.Nico Beddis, 4, with his new friend