tonies delivers the gift of stories and songs to children undergoing treatment in the UK

Helping to bring play to children undergoing serious medical treatment across the UK, tonies has gifted 500 tonies and heavily discounted Toniebox storytelling audio devices to children’s charity, Starlight.

The Tonieboxes support the charity’s Storybox programme that provides storytelling toys, books and crafts to children in hospitals and homes across the UK. At a time when Starlight’s storytelling team aren’t permitted to visit in person due to the pandemic, the Storybox initiative allows children to stay entertained through stories.

The Tonieboxes will allow children undergoing treatment to continue to hear their favourite stories and listen to songs, stimulating their imagination and providing them with some much-needed escapism during these challenging times.

To help children to feel connected to family and friends, the Tonieboxes and donated CreativeTonies also allow loved ones to record personal messages, which can be uploaded via The mytonies App, allowing those receiving treatment to continue to feel connected to loved ones.

Pinky Laing, UK Partnerships at tonies comments: ‘We are delighted to help bring a little respite to children who are receiving treatment during the pandemic and are proud to be part of Starlight’s Storybox programme.

tonies is committed to helping children through the power and magic of storytelling. Our audio storytelling devices help to engage young minds, and we feel fortunate that we can help support and inspire children who are going through a tough time with our tonies interactive audio system.’

Dr Krutika Pau, Director of Children’s Services at Starlight comments: ‘The pandemic has meant that children in hospital have faced heightened anxiety and worry and through our initial work, we’ve found that Toniebox was a fun and engaging activity for families to do together, which helped them escape from the worries of treatment, relax and bond.

From our pilot we saw that Toniebox benefits children both in hospital and at home, and when using them we saw a decrease in negative emotions such as feeling sad and anxious, and an increase in positive emotions such as feeling happy and confident. Toniebox served as a welcome distraction during treatment and as the stories are accessible and familiar, helped the children to feel relaxed. We are so grateful for Tonies’ support and hope many more children will benefit from this brilliant product throughout the year ahead.’

A Health Play Specialist at Queen Elizabeth Queen Mother Hospital, who received a Toniebox as part of the pilot programme comments: ‘The Toniebox helped children to keep calm. It helped to keep children distracted during procedures and connect with the staff completing the procedure. The Toniebox has provided entertainment for children who are isolating in their room. It gives them something to look forward to and brings happiness.’

Alison, mum to Lachlan who received a Toniebox from Starlight when undergoing medical treatment says: ‘Lachlan loves the Toniebox. One thing that is really great about it, especially for children with learning disabilities such as Lachlan, is that it helps them understand things like ‘cause and effect’ and also choice making. Visually he can see what he likes, for example he sees the Gruffalo, he can put it on and then he hears the Gruffalo. He is making choices and then he is understanding ‘cause and effect’: if I pick that and put that there, I will listen to something I want to. So it really is a smart toy.

The Toniebox is great for children to still learn if they are in hospital and missing out on school, as it has an educational element that is really exciting and interesting. Lachlan knows the tonies that he likes. As well as the Gruffalo, he loves counting and numbers so he would choose the nursery rhymes Tonies that include this. We put it in his room at night time with his sensory lights on. It is a good indication for him to know that it’s relaxation time now.’


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