Posted on Friday 21 August 2015
Only the Young pose for a picture with Rebecca, Lottie, Orlanda and Anya
Teenage patients at Evelina London kicked off the children’s hospital’s 10th birthday celebrations with an exciting party and exclusive performance from X Factor pop stars Only the Young.
Chocolate fountains, tightrope walking, DJs, a ‘pamper parlour’ and popcorn machine were just some of the activities enjoyed at the party, which was entirely organised by the Evelina Pride patient support group.
Rebecca Cavanagh, 15, from east London, was one of the event organisers. She said at the party: “It’s amazing that we’re celebrating Evelina’s 10th birthday. I’ve been a patient here for more than 10 years and I can remember when the hospital moved from Guy’s into its new home on the St Thomas’ site. It’s gone so fast!
“We’ve had so much fun organising the party. Evelina London is an amazing place full of amazing staff. They are my favourite thing about the hospital. They’re so committed to their patients.”
The Evelina Pride group is run by the hospital’s paediatric psychology service. The group was set up to enable teenage patients to develop supportive friendships through shared experiences and fun activities.
Lottie Mills, 14, from Little Hallingbury in Essex, flew back from her family holiday in Jersey so that she didn’t miss the big event. She said: “I was quite nervous flying back to London on my own but there was no way I was missing the party!
“We’re so excited that Only the Young could come and celebrate with us. We were hoping some celebrities would support us, they’ve made it so special.”
Only the Young’s Mikey, Parisa, Betsy-Blue and Charlie visited patients on the hospital wards before heading to perform at the party. Betsy said: “It’s so nice to be back at Evelina London. We’re so honoured and thankful to be here and meet so many amazing kids.”
The group performed three songs for patients, including an exclusive acoustic version of their new single ‘I Do’.
The party was the first event held to celebrate Evelina London’s 10th birthday. Guests at the party included staff and volunteers from Evelina London, and even Nala, Evelina’s therapy dog, joined in the fun.
Consultant clinical psychologist Melinda Edwards began the Evelina Pride group in 1999. She said: “I’m so proud of the group, they’ve arranged everything from the invitations to the decorations and even the cake. I’d like to congratulate them and the psychology and engagement team who worked so hard and so brilliantly to make this amazing event happen.
“We also owe a big thank you to Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity, Starlight Children’s Foundation, and Gavin Tiffin, our hospitality manager who helped organise the event and is currently cycling from London to Russia to raise funds for Evelina London.”