Bottesford schoolgirl embarks on readathon for hospital

Emilia Smith read 10 books in 10 days to raise enough money for three iPads for the QMC.
Emilia Smith read 10 books in 10 days to raise enough money for three iPads for the QMC.
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A schoolgirl has raised more than £1,000 for the hospital that treated her after she had surgery last month.

Bottesford Primary School pupil Emilia Smith, six, spent the day on the Children’s Ambulatory Care Unit at the Queen’s Medical Centre (QMC), Nottingham, last month, after having her tonsils removed.

Emilia Smith

Emilia Smith

During her stay, she was shocked to hear that two iPads had previously gone missing, leaving the children staying on the ward without any to play on after their operations.

Mum, Lucy Smith, 32, from Walnut Road in Bottesford, said: “The ward has a great playroom, but after having surgery, the children have got to stay in bed. As you can imagine, trying to get a six-year-old to stay in bed for any length of time is quite tricky.

“A nurse gave us an iPad to fill in the patient survey on and Emilia tried looking on it for games, but the nurse informed us that they didn’t have any iPads with games on anymore as the two that they did have had gone missing. Emilia couldn’t quite get her head around this.”

Once home, Emilia was told that she would need to be quarentined for almost two weeks to recover properly,

Rather than complaining about being stuck indoors for the remainder of her summer holidays, Emilia decided to embark on a ten-day sponsored read, to raise £350 for a new iPad for the children’s ward, by reading one book a day.

Determined not to make it easy on herself, she opted for books with lots of chapters in them.

Emilia said: “I didn’t want to read short pictures books as that would have been too easy.”

Supported by her sister Evelyn, three, Emilia spent the next ten days with her nose constantly in a different book including Roald Dahl and Famous Five.

Lucy added: “She already had eight books that she had chosen to read and we bought her two new ones.”

Despite aiming to purchase just one iPad for the hospital, Emilia has managed to triple her target and raise £1,150 - enough to buy three new iPads, three sets of headphones, bags and three £15 itune vouchers.

Emilia added: “Being in hospital is not very nice but the staff on The Children’s Ambulatory Care Unit do a great job of looking after you and I wanted to try and make it even better. My favourite book was Charlotte the Baby Princess Fairy, but I enjoyed reading all of the books.”

Deputy Head Nurse for Children and Young People and Family Health at NUH, Jamie Crew, said: “We are always very grateful to our families and patients who wish to raise money for the NUH Charity. The ipads will be a fantastic addition for our Children and Young people to use regularly to provide distraction during procedures and a welcome diversion and recreation for children recovering from Surgery on our Ambulatory Day care Unit”.

You can still support Emilia by visiting