2018, Multimedia + Performance

Creating a Children’s Book for Chronically Hospitalized Children

RADHIKA SAHAI

Chronically ill children spend extended periods of time in hospital and healthcare settings; they rely on books to engage their imaginations. These children do not have typical childhood experiences (consistently attending school, playing outside, being surrounded by family) as well as having atypical childhood experiences (experiencing pain and isolation from a very young age). Children’s storybooks typically depict a life very unlike that of a chronically hospitalized child and thus, cause many chronically ill children to see their own lives as abnormal, and their experiences isolated. I want to create a children’s story book that follows the narrative of chronically ill children, creates characters and a storyline that children can identify with, and serve as a medium to address the more difficult issues surrounding hospitalization (pain, isolation, etc.). The book will focus on addressing the patient experience and ensuring that chronically hospitalized children do not feel defined, constrained, or isolated by their experiences in the hospital. The book will not only affect patients but will hopefully also encourage healthcare workers to be more aware of the importance of these issues.

2nd Place – Multimedia + Performing Arts

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