One of the highlights at Cooper University Health Care each spring is the Teddy Goes to Cooper program where kindergarten students from KIPP Cooper Norcross Academy visit the hospital to learn about staying healthy and to alleviate fears about going to the doctor.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Cooper’s Community Outreach Team in conjunction with The Cooper Foundation have found a creative way to keep the program going this year – by making it available to students online.
“Teddy Goes to Cooper is such an important educational tool and the children always look forward to it,” said Michael Goodman, MD, Chief and Chairman of Pediatrics at the Children’s Regional Hospital at Cooper. “This time of pandemic has been stressful for everyone, but particularly for children who may not fully understand why they can’t attend school or see their friends right now. It’s important to help them maintain some sense of normalcy, and we thought it would be fun for them to continue the program even though we can’t meet in person.”
Just as in past events, Cooper provided students with a special teddy bear (distributed through the school), and a packet of materials including bandages, a mask, and hospital wrist band to use on their bear while watching a series of videos created by Cooper’s clinical staff uploaded to the school’s Google classroom. The students will have access to watch five videos about treating ailments, being healthy and safe, handwashing, and preventing injuries to apply on their teddy bears.
The program is made possible by funding from The Cooper Foundation.