We’re going on a Bear Hunt
This summer, ThinkOTB is supporting the Leeds Bear Hunt, a spectacular public art event that opened on July 1st across Leeds city centre. Organised by Leeds Hospitals Charity to raise money for Leeds Children’s Hospital, here we share why sponsoring a Bear is about so much more than a work of art to everyone at ThinkOTB.
Our chairman, Mark Davies, is a volunteer trustee for Leeds Hospitals Charity. Speaking to Mag North, Mark said “We’re proud to be involved with Leeds Bear Hunt…This event is an opportunity for us as an organisation to show our gratitude and support for Leeds Hospitals Charity and its brilliant staff. As somebody who has been fortunate enough to see their incredible hard work and dedication first-hand, I know what a profound difference it makes to the lives of patients and their families.”
ThinkOTB’s Bear called ‘Bloom’ is one of 50 super-sized bears and 35 smaller bear cubs that are hiding in plain sight on the streets of Leeds for ten weeks until September 9th. We chose northern artist Caroline Dowsett to paint our Bear. Caroline told BBC News: “It’s a real honour to be part of such an important cause. I want to evoke a sense of optimism and bring a splash of colour into our everyday lives. The use of colours and composition are inspired by feelings of joy, and that is the main source of inspiration in my work.”
The Bear sculptures are inspired by the best-selling children’s book ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’, written by Michael Rosen, illustrated by Helen Oxenbury and published by Walker Books. Over 33 years, readers young and old have been swishy-swashing and splash-sploshing through this wonderful story which is all about how we deal with our fears. This is reflected in the experience of many children in hospital, who might be scared of the unknown, or possibly the knowledge of what is to come.
Raising funds for families facing their own ‘Bear’
Leeds Hospitals Charity is the charity for Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust. Each year the charity provides £5 million in additional funding for Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust for equipment, services, education, and research to support NHS staff to deliver the best care for patients and their families.
When the bear hunt ends in September, the Bears will be auctioned off, to raise funds for Leeds Children’s Hospital. A relatively unknown success story, Leeds Children’s Hospital has a comprehensive range of specialist paediatric services which rival any children’s hospital in the country. It offers:
- One of the largest neonatal services in the country
- The only paediatric trauma unit in Yorkshire equipped to respond to all types of trauma
- One of only three paediatric liver transplant centres in the UK
The hope is that funds from the auction will create a Leeds Children’s Hospital that is a welcoming and reassuring place, with a hospital team that is equipped to support children and families facing their own “Bear” using the latest technology and the best clinical equipment.