Giving kids a way to play

Toys for sick kids

 

Medical students collect toys for patients at the Stollery Children’s Hospital.

I volunteered a lot even before medical school, so it’s really important to me to make time to give back. I think I have a lot to give and I’m grateful for the chance to do it.

Given the heavy commitments that come with medical school, most medical students probably don’t have much interest in knowing what the kindergarten set plays with these days.

But for Brieanne Rogers – a second-year medical student at the University of Alberta – finding and delivering the toys that kids want most was her goal in helping to organize a toy drive for the Stollery Children’s Hospital.

“A lot of people choose medical school because they want to help people,” explains Rogers who (along with Aleksa Leszczynski and Nicole Veltri) is one of the three leaders of the medical students’ association pediatric club.

“And this was a way to help students support the community in a really important way. A single toy or a book can make such a difference to children when they are living with health issues.”

The first-ever medical student toy drive, which was part of the Stollery’s larger annual Christmas toy drive, ran from the end of November until just before Christmas break and was well received.

New, unwrapped toys were accepted on campus and transported by Golden Arrow Transport to the Stollery.

Rogers and her colleagues will be passing the torch to the next second-year class and would like to see it expand to give students a bit more time to organize donations and increase the number of donations.

“I’d really love to see it carry on for many years to come.”

Although Rogers won’t be involved with the toy drive next year, she intends to continue volunteering.

“I volunteered a lot even before medical school, so it’s really important to me to make time to give back. I think I have a lot to give and I’m grateful for the chance to do it.”

More on this initiative

The AMA advances patient-centered, quality care by advocating for and supporting physician leadership and wellness.