Richard Miles (left) and David Osterland (right) of Swansea Building Society hand over cheque for £1,000 to Sorrel Mayo (centre) of Tŷ Hafan Children's Hospice.

A £1000 donation from Swansea Building Society has enabled Tŷ Hafan Children’s Hospice – a charity which provides comfort, care, and support to children with life-shortening conditions and their loved ones – to buy a sensory POD for its centre.

The donation will specifically fund a POD sensory themed space at Tŷ Hafan. These spaces play a crucial role in helping children explore their emotions in a calming environment, particularly those living with special sensory and complex needs.

The POD is an invaluable addition to the hospice and is designed to provide a respite care environment that aids in communication, development, and emotional well-being.

When entering the POD, children are transported to another level of sensory engagement. They are surrounded by a 360-degree graphical representation that immerses them in various environments, such as a spacecraft traveling through the galaxy, a jungle, or a snowy scene.

With a control panel and holographic effect navigation equipment, the children feel fully immersed in these environments, promoting a sense of calm and enjoyment. The highly visible formations subtly mapped out in the POD further enhance the experience, allowing children to explore and communicate their emotions effectively.

Sorrel Mayo, Corporate Senior Fundraiser at Tŷ Hafan, said:

“At Tŷ Hafan, many of our children find communicating quite difficult, so it is essential to use sensory items to help with development and communication. In turn, these activities help to reduce anxiety and provide emotional support through play, along with learning new coping strategies for the difficulties they face. Importantly, this also promotes emotional well-being which has a knock-on effect for the whole family.

“Huge thanks to Swansea Building Society for very kindly providing the funds for the themed pods; they are a hugely important addition to the hospice, and the benefits to the children are immeasurable.”

Swansea Building Society’s donation to Tŷ Hafan forms part of its larger centenary initiative, which aims to give back to the community. In total, the Society will donate £100,000 to local charities, with £85,000 being allocated to three main charitable causes. Additionally, the Society’s Swansea, Carmarthen, and Cowbridge branches will donate £15,000 to charities directly related to their local communities. These contributions reflect Swansea Building

Society’s values of supporting the local community and making a positive difference in the region.

Alongside the donation to Tŷ Hafan, Swansea Building Society has undertaken various centenary initiatives throughout the year. These include 100 days of volunteering, encouraging staff members to engage in local projects; planting 100 trees at Penllergare Valley Woods; as well as organising various other fundraisers, with proceeds benefiting the Society’s official staff charity, Maggie’s Swansea.

Richard Miles, Head of Savings & Marketing/Area Manager East, said:

“We are delighted to donate £1000 to Tŷ Hafan Children’s Hospice to fund this sensory POD as part of our ongoing centenary celebration. It is a privilege to support such a remarkable charity that provides comfort, care, and support to children with life-shortening conditions and their loved ones. At Swansea Building Society, we are dedicated to making a positive impact in our local community and are honoured to play a role in improving the lives of these children and their families.”

Swansea Building Society fund sensory POD at Tŷ Hafan Children’s Hospice