NHLers Help Put Smiles On Orillia Kids Faces

Smilezone Foundation transforms Paediatric unit at OSMH

Hockey Greats descended on Orillia Thursday to help cut a ribbon. Hockey Night In Canada’s Ron MacLean and a variety of former NHL stars including Darryl Sittler and Mike Gartner were on hand for the grand opening of the new Paediatric Outpatient Smile Zone at Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital. The Smilezone foundation was founded in 2012 by Scott Bachly and NHL star Adam Graves. Their mission is to transform hospital and healthcare spaces to “Zones” to improve the lives of children facing illness, disabilities and physical and emotional obstacles.

The foundation has transformed over 200 smilezones across Ontario.

SmileZone, located on the second floor of OSMH is a culmination of efforts to bring together all different outpatient programs for kids which include child cancer care, juvenile diabetes, eating disorder care, asthma, mental health into one physical space. It features a variety of services and a friendly space which includes a gym, colourful murals, interactive elements iPads and new toys.

“With the help of the Smilezone Foundation they were able to redesign the space,” Carmine Stumpo, President and CEO of Soldiers says, ” brighten it up and really make it an attractive place where families and their kids can come and receive excellent care in a welcoming environment with lots of colours and excellent light.”

Andrea Lesperance of Midland, whose daughter Madeline has spina bifida is looking forward to having a space that her daughter will enjoy and have fun with. Andrea hopes that by having the clinic treatments in the same physical location will help with communication, collaboration, ease of flow and ultimately a better result for the kids. It will also help shorten the length of stay per visit and reduce travel time for all families.