Teen, 14 comes up with idea to brighten up Coast hospital

Rosemaree Maynard,14, helping out with a Christmas toy run.
Rosemaree Maynard,14, helping out with a Christmas toy run. Warren Lynam

HOSPITALS can be depressing.

But it only takes a little cheer to brighten the place up.

An idea thought up by 14-year-old Coast teen Rose Maynard set out to do exactly that by putting smiles on the faces of all the children at the Caboolture hospital.

Ms Maynard became inspired to find a way to make hospitals a happy place after her younger brother Ben was constantly in and out of one.

Ben suffers from Tourette Syndrome and Attention-deficient disorder, was one of many patients at the hospital.

So, the bright teen decided to organise an annual toy-run around Christmas and a visit from Santa each year to the Caboolture, with the help of her dad, David.

Now in its third year, Rose's 4x4 Toy Run events sees bed-full's of toys donated from Coast residents to be taken to child-patients at the hospital.

The Year 9 student of Beerwah High School said she started the idea simply to see more smiles on the children's faces.

"I know how hard it is for families to have brothers, sisters or their kids in hospital,” she said.

"My little brother has disabilities and is always in and out of hospital - it has a really big impact on my family and especially him.

"The idea of giving every child a toy gives them comfort and something fun to keep and play with during their stay.”

She said in previous years, the toy deliveries made some of the children cry with joy.

"It can be hard to watch,” she said,

"But a single smile can make someone's day, and that's why we are doing this.”

The event will be held at the Caboolture showgrounds from 10am, December 17, where residents can bring along a toy to donate and enjoy a barbecue lunch.

The event will then be taken to the hospital, where Santa will arrive to deliver the goods.

Mr Maynard (Rose's father) said last year the event attracted 44 cars to join in on the parade from the show-grounds to the hospital.

He said he shed a few tears watching some of the children's reactions.

"I couldn't be prouder of Rose,” he said.

"There was one girl at the hospital one year, whose mother told us she hadn't smiled in years.

"But when she was given a toy, she smiled from ear to ear.

"We cried that day.”

Mr Maynard said his daughter was a "legend” and anyone who wanted to get involved with her event should search "Roses 4X4 TOY RUN” on Facebook.

Topics:  caboolture caboolture hospital sunshine coast toy run

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