Michelle Kataneo and nurses from the post part floor at the Victoria General Hospital doled out gifts to children children staying at the hospital over Christmas. They collected more than 100 toys and $1,000 in gift cards. (Photos courtesy VIHA)

Nurses donate gifts to sick kids at Victoria General Hospital

Medical staff forego secret Santa to dole out more than 100 gifts children on pediatric floor

Nurses at the Victoria General Hospital scrapped gifts for each other, for gifts for their patients.

Staff of the post partum floor of VGH swapped their Secret Santa program for a toy drive, dressing up as Santa’s favourite reindeer and doling out the more than 100 toys and $1,000 in gift cards to sick children and families staying there Christmas Day.

“(The children) were so excited, there was one teen who was lying in her bed under the covers but not sleeping,” said organizer Michelle Kataneo. “We handed her gifts… and within two minutes, she came out dressed as an elf and said she wanted to help us out.”

Kataneo, a nurse at the hospital for 19 years, alongside half the other registered nurses working their floor Christmas Day, handed out gifts collected since mid December while the other half stayed back to care of the mothers and their newborns.

“It is such a great place to work, it is such a happy to place to work most of the time. I thought it would be nice to spread a little bit of that to another floor,” Kataneo said.

“I had friends show up at my house with bags of gifts, it was pretty awesome. I know we have an amazing community, it just reinforces how wonderful our community is.”

ALSO SEE: Santa visits Victoria General Hospital’s littlest patients

Donators dropped off gift certificates and bags of toys for two-and-a-half weeks leading up to Christmas to have enough toys for more than 20 youth and gift cards for families that would be spending the night there on Christmas.

She said many parents won’t even leave their children to go for a coffee unless they have a gift card, preferring to save money for their sick children.

“We all walked off the pediatric floor and thought this was the best Christmas ever, we weren’t spending it with family but we were spending it with work family,” Kataneo said. “There are people in there in the worst time of their lives with sick kids and to make it even a little bit better was pretty awesome.”


@arnoldlimphoto
arnold.lim@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Governing bodies accused of ‘destroying’ girls’ hockey by Island’s top team

When asked for advice hockey dad says ‘put your girls in soccer’

Guns could use smartphone-style fingerprint locks in near future

Startups looking to outflank traditional gun manufacturers using tech knowhow

Syrian violinist plays with new Canadian band at upcoming fundraiser

Sari Alesh played with the Symphony Orchestra in Syria for six years

Esquimalt to finalize township’s four-year plan

Council will soon make final decisions on its draft strategic goals and priorities

Sarah Beckett Cruise back for its fourth year this Sunday

Money this year is going into buying playground equipment for the playground in honour of the fallen constable

WATCH: Movie star and PACE alum Calum Worthy talks musical theatre and his career

“American Vandal” and “Austin and Ally” actor has been returning to the program for over 20 years

POLL: How often does your family use BC Ferries?

Navigating the lineups for BC Ferries is a way of life for… Continue reading

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of April 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Flooding, climate change force Quebecers to rethink relationship with water

Compensation for victims of recurring floods limit to 50% of a home’s value, or a maximum of $100,000

Storms blast South, where tornadoes threaten several states

9.7 million people in the Carolinas and Virginia at a moderate risk of severe weather

Private cargo ship brings Easter feast to the space station

There are three Americans two Russians and one Canadian living on the space station

Notre Dame rector: “Computer glitch” possible fire culprit

The fire burned through the lattice of oak beams supporting the monument’s vaulted stone ceiling

B.C. senior sentenced for sexually abusing special-needs granddaughter

73-year-old Cortes Island man will go to jail for three years

Howe Sound Queen sailing toward retirement

Vessel now up for auction ends regular runs between Crofton and Vesuvius at the beginning of June

Most Read