The Magic Hospital
Welcome to the Magic Hospital where we believe that laughter is still the best medicine
 

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  • 22 Nov 2013 9:00 AM | Daniel Renteria (Administrator)

    Magic Hospital believes in letting kids be kids, even if it's only for a day. This May 31, they hold their third annual t-shirt painting event, visting hospitals, migrant schools and this year, the Stars and Rain School for Autistic Children. Hundreds of volunteers will give thousands of children care packages.

  • 22 Nov 2013 8:59 AM | Daniel Renteria (Administrator)

    Dans le golf, sortir du rough et des bunkers s’apparente bien souvent à de véritables obstacles, qui fort heureusement ne sont pas infranchissables avec un peu de dexterité. Dans la vie, essayer de vaincre l’exclusion sociale est une réalité quotidienne pour des enfants autistes comme Mélanie, Thibault, ou Jules. C’est pourquoi l’association Hôpital Magique vient de créer, en partenariat avec la CRAIF (Centre de ressource Autisme Ile-de-France) et quelques golfs de la région parisienne, les ateliers "Kids Open" basés sur les exercices du golf. Conçus pour favoriser la concentration, l’orientation et le contact social des enfants autistes, ces ateliers leurs permettent de découvrir un nouvel environnement favorable à leur épanouissement. Une initiative qui ne laisse pas indifférent et qui mérite d’être saluée.


    Infos et contacts : Association Hôpital Magique,
    142 Avenue Parmentier, 75011 Paris
    Tél : 01.43.38.01.15
    Mail : claudia.vogg@magichospital.org

    VOIR EN LIGNE : www.magichospital.org

  • 22 Nov 2013 8:59 AM | Daniel Renteria (Administrator)





    Children from Beijing Guang Ai Migrant School use colored markers to draw on T-shirts given to them to celebrate the International Children's Day in the Shunyi District of the outskirts of Beijing June 2,2007.

    A group of volunteers has come to Guang Ai Migrant School Hou Shayu, in the outskirts of Beijing to celebrate T-Shirt Day. This is the second year it's held to coincide with International Children's Day. It's an event organized by MagicHospital in Beijing to bring a bit of cheer to kids who are in difficult circumstances.

    Teacher Shi gives instructions to over 50 children to stand in line according to their age groups and they quickly scurry into place. They range in age from 4 to 17 years, and they live and study in this small compound

    Children from Beijing Guang Ai Migrant School use colored markers to draw on T-shirts given to them to celebrate the International Children's Day in the Shunyi District of the outskirts of Beijing June 2,2007.
     

    Another teacher surnamed Li gives the volunteers a tour. Downstairs are tiny classrooms of about 15 students each that have minimal lighting. The walls are bare and rundown, but the desks are tidy.

    Upstairs are the dormitories, where rows of small shoes are lined outside each door. And inside the rooms, there are four metal bunk beds pushed together, but in fact 10 children sleep there, with two smaller students sharing one bed. Underneath the beds are plastic washbasins, one for each child.

    The school was started four years ago and Li explains these students are the sons and daughters of migrant workers, children "left behind" as their parents travel far to find a job. "We give the pupils a basic education so that by the time they reach 17 or 18 years of age, they will be able to find a basic job," he explains.

    But back outside in the schoolyard, the children wait patiently as volunteers sort out their presents to give to the children. They each bow in appreciation of their gift. It's a bright red backpack and inside is a set of pencil crayons, paper, colored markers, a plain white T-shirt, two milk boxes and hand wipes.

    Then they sat down at the tables and volunteers encouraged them to draw on the T-shirts. Some children were hesitant and preferred to practice their designs on paper first, while others eagerly grabbed the felt-tip markers and wasted no time in drawing on the cotton shirt.

    Many drew hearts, others butterflies and flowers. One drew a multi-colored rainbow complete with flowers and a house. The volunteers, mainly Spanish expatriates and some native Beijingers went around the tables and praised the children on their artistic talents.

    And when they were done, the students put on their new clothes over their scruffy ones and laughed and pointed at each other's work.

    This year's T-Shirt Day was held in 12 locations in Beijing, including Guang Ai Migrant School, BeidaHospital, StreetChildrenProtectionCenter, and Wisdom Springs. Some children are in hospital for various diseases or psychological problems, disadvantaged youth, or those whose parents were either executed or imprisoned.

    T-Shirt Day has also expanded to Shanghai and Tianjin this year with hopes of expanding the project of bringing more smiles to children's faces in others cities across the country.

  • 22 Nov 2013 8:59 AM | Daniel Renteria (Administrator)



     

    Tous les mercredis et vendredis, des clowns font rire des enfants malades dans des hôpitaux chinois. Pionnier en Chine, Magic Hospital a importé le concept du rire médecin.

    Pour la suissesse Annette Borla, tout a commencé en 2004, peu après la naissance de son premier enfant. Lors d’un trajet en avion, elle rencontre Magdalena The, la coordinatrice du Magic Hospital. Depuis mars 2003, l’ "association" (ce terme n’existe pas en droit chinois) tend à rendre le sourire aux enfants hospitalisés. Séduite, Annette décide de participer à l’entreprise : "Chacun a sa part de responsabilité. Le Magic Hospital s’organise projet par projet. J’ai donc été en charge de certaines opérations. Par exemple, j’ai organisé récemment une sortie au zoo pour des enfants autistes, qui était parrainée par une banque d’investissement américaine."

    Le Magic Hospital multiplie en effet les actions. Lancée par l’allemande Claudia Vogg avec le concours de trois frères chinois, clowns de profession, l’association ne se contente pas du rire hebdomadaire procuré par les amuseurs. Magiciens, professeurs d’anglais, artistes et psychologues se relaient désormais au chevet des enfants de l’Hôpital des Enfants de Pékin et de l’Hôpital de l’Université de Pékin. Récemment, elle a également organisé le "T-shirt Day", un événement qui a touché 1 500 enfants pékinois venus personnaliser un t-shirt.

    Et en tant que coordinatrice, Magdalena The a encore beaucoup d’idées pour la suite. En décembre, le Père Noël devrait passer dans les hôpitaux partenaires de l’entreprise ainsi que dans une école pour les enfants démunis. Magdalena voudrait également mettre en place une opération pour permettre aux enfants atteints d’une maladie grave de réaliser l’un de leurs vœux les plus chers, avec l’aide d’une actrice hongkongaise. La coordinatrice du Magic Hospital fourmille d’idées et d’énergie, bien que comme les trois quarts des bénévoles de l’association, elle assume cette charge en plus d’un travail rémunéré.

    La jeune néerlandaise ne cache pas le poids de la tâche. Elle avait tenu à reprendre l’organisation de l’entreprise il y a trois ans, pensant qu’elle serait à son tour remplacée. Mais le Magic Hospital est sans cesse en quête de bénévoles et de financements. Seuls les clowns sont payés pour leur prestation. Le reste du comité d’organisation est composé de personnes rémunérées au sourire. "Souvent, j’ai envie d’arrêter pour me consacrer un peu plus à mon travail" confie Magdalena. "Mais il me suffit d’aller assister à nos spectacles pour continuer. Un jour, j’ai observé un petit garçon qui était assis dans le fond. Il était avec son père. Ils étaient tous les deux très sérieux, avec la mine triste. Une demi-heure plus tard, ils étaient métamorphosés. Ils riaient et avaient retrouvé toute leur énergie. C’est ça qui me donne envie de continuer."

    Depuis quelques temps, le Magic Hospital essaie néanmoins de pérenniser son action. Après avoir gagner la confiance des médecins qui s’étaient montrés sceptiques, ils essaient désormais d’inscrire l’association dans la société chinoise. Déjà, le comité d’organisation a accueilli de nombreux bénévoles chinois et Magdalena cherche une personne susceptible de prendre sa suite dans la coordination des actions. Mais pour l’instant, les dons proviennent encore et avant tout de l’international. Le plus problématique selon Annette Borla, réside dans le fait que les rentrées d’argent sont ponctuelles et imprévisibles : "Le sponsoring d’événement, les dîners caritatifs ou les dons privés ne permettent d’élaborer que des budgets hypothétiques. Nous avons donc évacué tous les frais fixes. Nous communiquons par mail et nous nous réunissons une fois par semaine dans une école de chinois qui nous prête une salle." Une gestion plutôt complexe avec laquelle doivent jongler les membres de l’association, ce qui ne les a pourtant pas empêché de passer un accord avec le Centre médical pour enfants de Shanghai.

  • 22 Nov 2013 8:58 AM | Daniel Renteria (Administrator)
    As goals go, it couldn't be simpler: to bring a smile to the face of a child. And yet, for all the simplicity, it's easy to forget how many underprivileged children in Beijing live without the love and protection that comes from a happy family upbringing. For three years Magic Hospital has been entertaining children in the capital's pediatric hospitals and orphanages with their clowns and volunteer English teachers, but now the charity is embarking on their most ambitious project yet. They hope to bring smiles to 1,500 little faces as part of their city wide T-Shirt Day.

    On Saturday June 3, over fifty volunteers will arrive at eleven different hospitals, orphanages, and special schools bearing gifts of white T-shirts and coloring pens. In effect a blank canvas for children to experiment with, the idea is to encourage creativity, self-confidence, and plain, simple fun. "It is an art therapy idea to get the kids to express themselves using an interesting media. Give them a blank canvas, which they can go wild on with their pens and get to keep at the end," explains Hannah Oussedik, one of the volunteers heading the project.

    Including the Village of Sun, which houses children whose parents have been incarcerated, and the Stars and Rain Education Institute for Autistic Children, the event is the first of its kind for China. Each child will be presented with a bright red box covered in yellow stars inside which they will find a T-shirt, pens, paper and a Nestle milk drink. "Some of these kids never get nice gifts," says Oussedik, "so we will give them their own special box which they can write their name on."

    Founded in 2003 by Claudia Vogg, who has since left China, Magic Hospital began by organizing weekly clown visits to local hospitals to cheer up children otherwise preoccupied by operations and cancer treatment. Partly inspired by the film Patch Adams, which stars Robin Williams as a doctor who tries to use laughter as a form of medicine, Magic Hospital employed the Mcdonalds trained Liu Brothers to crack jokes and play educational games with the kids. Gradually expanding, the group now arranges regular day trips to Beijing Zoo and other cultural sites for autistic children and the offspring of migrant workers. Now they hope to go national with a possible link up with a child protection center in Xi'an.

    "One of our hopes is to reach outside the Beijing area and into the countryside. Perhaps we can create a mobile team that can go out there," says Magic Hospital assistant Ted Maloney. "As our main focus is underprivileged kids, whether they are sick kids in a hospital or migrant workers' kids or homeless kids, wherever there is a need we want to give these children some semblance of a happy childhood."

    Currently looking for volunteer support and contributions for next month's massive event, the children will have a second chance to view their masterpieces, as photographs of their work will go on display from June 18 at the C.D.Q Art Studio in Dashanzi.

    Says Oussedik, "The whole belief behind Magic Hospital is to bring laughter and happiness to the faces of the children. If we can do that we have achieved."
  • 22 Nov 2013 8:58 AM | Daniel Renteria (Administrator)

    When Beijing-based charity Magic Hospital makes a visit, whether to an orphanage or children's hospital, you can usually expect there to be plenty of red plastic noses, balloon animals, professional clowns and magicians and the sounds of kids laughing. But this past weekend, their team of clowns got a day off as Magic Hospital held its first ever T-Shirt Day in Beijing. On June 3rd, groups of volunteers visited a number of local shelters and hospitals, presenting over 1500 kids with Magic Boxes filled with everything they needed to create their own t-shirt.

    Heading one these volunteer groups was Ted Maloney, the spokesperson for Magic Hospital and English Professor at the Beijing Foreign Studies University. Many of his students from BFSU helped out on T-Shirt Day, including Sunni Chen from Jiangsu Province. I caught up with both Ted and Sunni at the BFSU campus this week to talk about how T-Shirt Day went and the importance of volunteering.

    If you'd like to see pictures from T-Shirt Day, you can visit the CDQ Art Studio in the 798 Art Zone. That's located in the Dashanzi district in Beijing and the show will run from June 10th to 18th.

  • 22 Nov 2013 8:57 AM | Daniel Renteria (Administrator)


  • 22 Nov 2013 8:57 AM | Daniel Renteria (Administrator)
    Every other Friday afternoon in Beijing,seriously-ill children gather in a room to watch the red-nosed clowns perform magic,such as turn-ing balloons into a sword or a pet.
  • 22 Nov 2013 8:56 AM | Daniel Renteria (Administrator)

    By CASSIE BIGGS
    Associated Press Writer
    April 22, 2006, 10:50 PM EDT


    BEIJING -- A dozen pint-size patients laugh and shout when the man with a red plastic nose waves a magic wand and turns black-and-white drawings to color.

    When the clown twists a balloon into the shape of a dog, 8-year-old Ke Xinqiao claps so hard that his mother worries he will accidentally pull out an IV needle. The ecstatic youngster hardly notices as she pats it into place.

    His attention is focused on clown Liu Yongjun, who, along with his brother Liu Jinjun, has been brightening up the drab wards of two children's hospitals in Beijing since 2003.

    With their goofy blue-and-white balloon trousers and magic wands, the Liu brothers are China's first hospital clowns, pioneering the therapeutic benefits of a dose of laughter.

    "This type of performance is taking our clowning to a new level," Liu Yongjun said. "It's not about slapstick. We're here to make the kids laugh, to make them forget. It's all about happiness."

    The Liu brothers come from a family of acrobats, magicians and jugglers and have been clowning since they were 11. Now in their 50s, they make their living performing at birthday parties, fairs and luxury hotels in China's capital.

    They started entertaining sick children when they signed up with the Beijing-based charity Magic Hospital in 2003.

    Xinqiao is a big fan. When the Lius visited at Beijing Women and Children's Hospital, the boy had been hospitalized for two weeks and had another 20 days of treatment for a disease his mother would only describe as neurological.

    "He has been so listless," she said, wiping saliva from his mouth. "But when he saw the clowns, he was so excited. It was as if he was a normal child again."

    Hospital clowns are familiar figures in the West, where doctors and nurses sometimes don frizzy wigs and crack jokes to jolly small patients along the road to recovery. Some children's hospitals have humor carts, stocked with games, comic books and costumes.

    But in China, public hospitals are bleak places where strict visiting hours mean children might see their parents just once a week.

    It was the lack of support or activities for hospitalized children that inspired Claudia Vogg, a German woman who was working in China, to set up Magic Hospital.

    "All I could see was adults providing for them what adults think they need -- food, clothes, medicine and school work. But I thought, 'They're children, so why not try and bring in a bit of fun?'" she said by phone from her home in Paris, where she is setting up a similar charity.

    The doctors and nurses at the 750-bed Women and Children's Hospital, one of the world's biggest hospitals for youngsters, agreed to the program in 2003 after just two meetings, Vogg said.

    "I was so surprised, but the doctors all sat there nodding their heads when I explained the concept of 'xiao ye shi yao' or 'laughter is also medicine,'" she said. "I was also surprised because it was a 'laowai' (foreigner) proposing it."

    Besides the Liu brothers, the Magic Hospital team includes teachers of art and English. Except for the clowns, who earn $30 each for making two-hour performances twice a week at the hospital, everyone else is a volunteer.

    The money comes from private donations and fundraising events, though a few corporations have donated. In the early days, Vogg paid the clowns out of her own pocket.

    Magic Hospital also takes clowns to orphanages, schools for the children of migrant workers and homes for street children.

    "It's about ensuring that children enjoy their right to be a child -- to have fun and play," said Magda The, a Dutch woman who is one of the group's 13 volunteer workers.

    In China, "doctors and nurses know how to administer medicine and treat a patient on medical terms. But a bedside manner has never been a part of the curriculum for medical training," said The, a former liaison officer for the medical charity Doctors Without Borders and a mother of two.

    "For the kids, just seeing these guys in costumes and with their painted faces, it's different from the endless parade of white coats. They know they are going to have some fun," said The. "It's also a bit of a respite for parents and the nursing staff."

    Beijing Women and Children's is one of the capital's more progressive hospitals, and allows one parent to sleep in a child's room on a cot. But there are few distractions from the hospital tedium, and many of the children are lethargic with drugs, pain or boredom.

    "I would really like to have music in all the children's wards, as well as cartoon books and DVDs," said head nurse Chen Jianjun, who also is an associate professor of nursing at Peking University.

  • 22 Nov 2013 8:56 AM | Daniel Renteria (Administrator)
    Beijing: Ke Xinqiao, 8, claps so hard when the man with the red plastic nose twists a balloon into the shape of a dog that the boy's mother worries he will accidentally pull out his intravenous needle.

    Xinqiao and a dozen other pint-size patients at the Beijing Women and Children's Hospital laugh and shout as the clown waves his magic wand and turns black-and-white drawings in a colouring book to colour.

    Dangling his legs off the bed and crunching on a rice cracker, Xinqiao hardly notices as his mother pats the IV needle into place. His attention is focused on clown Liu Yongjun, who, with his brother Liu Jinjun, has been brightening up the drab wards of two Beijing children's hospitals since 2003.

    With their goofy blue-and-white balloon trousers and magic wands, the Liu brothers are China's first hospital clowns, pioneering the therapeutic benefits of a dose of laughter.

    "This type of performance is taking our clowning to a new level," Liu Yongjun said.

    "We're here to make the kids laugh, to make them forget. It's all about happiness."

    Hospital clowns are familiar figures in the West, where doctors and nurses sometimes don frizzy wigs and crack jokes to jolly small patients along the road to recovery.

    But in China, public hospitals are bleak places where strict visiting hours mean children might see their parents just once a week.

    It was the lack of support or activities for hospitalised children that inspired Claudia Vogg, a German woman who was working in China, to set up Magic Hospital.

    "All I could see was adults providing for children what adults think they need - food, clothes, medicine and school work. But I thought, 'They're children, so why not try and bring in a bit of fun?'," she said.

    Vogg has returned to Europe and is setting up a version there of the same programme to conduct theatre workshops for children in hospitals and prisons.

    Besides the Liu brothers, the Magic Hospital team includes teachers of art and English. - Sapa-AP
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