At Shriners Hospitals for Children — Salt Lake City, care extends far beyond hospital walls. We are devoted to providing patients the opportunity to identify activities they enjoy so they can return to their communities and be active, confident and ready for new challenges and opportunities.
The hospital staff plans activities, as well as partners with a number of community organizations, to provide opportunities for children to explore and grow their potential both inside and outside the hospital. Contact our recreation therapist to direct you to opportunities, which include the following:
One of the best ways to share the Shriners Hospitals for Children story, is to tell yours! Patient ambassadors are given opportunities to share with the general public, Shriners and other community groups how Shriners Hospitals for Children has affected their lives.
The patient ambassador program provides an opportunity for kids to develop confidence and public speaking skills, with the coaching of our public relations department. They are invited to participate in community events in which the hospital is involved, from fundraisers to sports games.
Our patient ambassadors have made appearances in national commercials; taken a trip to the North Pole with Delta Air Lines; volunteered as hospital representatives at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in Las Vegas; made speeches and appearances at hospital fundraisers and events; and have made numerous television, print, radio and social media appearances. If your child is interested in becoming a patient ambassador, please send us an email. Thanks for considering giving back to the hospital in this way!
The Un-Limb-ited camps are teen amputee camps staffed by members of physical and recreational therapy, nursing and prosthetics departments at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Salt Lake City. These camps – in partnership with the National Abilities Center and Holiday River Expeditions – offer a unique opportunity for teenagers from all over the nation with limb loss or deficiency to learn either adaptive skiing or snowboarding, or take a weeklong river rafting trip down the Green River. Participants receive professional instruction and through additional activities, campers have opportunities to interact with both their peers and staff members. As a group, they explore issues common to teenagers with limb loss or deficiency while developing skills for future success. Shriners Hospitals for Children — Salt Lake City seeks to help its patients reach their full potential beyond treating their conditions, by helping patients adjust to their physical challenges through skills training and recreational and therapeutic activities.
Learn more about the Un-Limb-ited camps.
Our adaptive bike program, supported by physical therapy, helps children continue to work on therapy goals at home. For children in therapy who qualify, the adaptive bike program allows for a child who cannot use a regular bike to get one fitted exactly to his needs in order to get him out on the road with other kids. Our annual Walk for LOVE has a bike lane just for kids on adaptive bikes.
We partner with Courage Reins to provide this local community reintegration program, which focuses on equine-assisted activities and therapies. For more information on scholarship opportunities, send an email to recreation therapy.
Shriners Hospitals for Children — Salt Lake City has its very own adaptive baseball team! Traditional baseball leagues may not offer children with special physical challenges the time, space and support they need to play ball, but thanks to Miracle League in partnership with Salt Lake County Adaptive Recreation, Shriners Hospitals for Children patients, and other children from the community facing similar limitations, have the chance to engage in this all-American team sport. No matter the challenge (whether its physical challenges resulting from cerebral palsy or spina bifida), all are welcome. Miracle League takes place in the fall and spring.
For more information on our Miracle League baseball team, send an email to recreation therapy.
Shriners Hospitals for Children — Salt Lake City regularly facilitates structured activities at the hospital. Activities such as our quarterly Family Fests, arts and crafts and performing groups are offered to patients and their families. To receive email invitations to these events, subscribe to our e-newsletter.
Our play groups program is a collaboration between physical therapy and recreation therapy. Each group is comprised of children with common ages and diagnoses, to help them achieve therapeutic goals and provide safe social opportunities. These play groups are designed for patients transitioning from one-on-one physical therapy needs, who can still benefit from regular therapeutic activities. Play groups reinforce physical therapy goals in a fun, therapeutic atmosphere. Both the child and family benefit from the social dynamics provided by the play group.
For more information on our play groups program, send an email to recreation therapy.
For kids with additional medical needs, attending a traditional summer camp can seem impossible. Recreation therapy and physical therapy come together to provide a series of day camps for our patients throughout the summer. Each camp is customized for patients with their unique strengths and challenges in mind. Each camper is grouped with kids of similar ability level and given activities that are both fun and productive. Each specialized camp allows therapists to mask therapy via make-believe activities such as a pirate-themed camp, which has patients “walk the plank” to help them work on their balance, or “swab the deck” to increase upper body strength. Camp crafts are designed to help develop fine motor skills.
Camp is provided at no cost to patients, with generous donors covering the cost of camp t-shirts, activities, staff and a concluding party for all participants and their siblings and parents, an important part of Shriners Hospitals for Children family-centered care philosophy.
For more information on our day camps program, send an email to recreation therapy.
At Shriners Hospitals for Children — Salt Lake City, we enjoy celebrating holidays. Thanks to the generosity of donors, we are able to create memorable moments for our patients. Child life and recreation therapy work together to provide a holiday celebration each child can enjoy. It could be a special cupcake after surgery on your birthday or even a visit from Santa himself for children who stay over on Christmas Eve.
Shriners Hospitals for Children — Salt Lake City offers a summer camp and ongoing research study called Shriners Nutrition and Activity Program (SNAP). The program is led by several physical therapists, a recreational therapist and a nutritionist. In SNAP, children learn about healthy eating and fun ways to move their bodies. They get to participate in cooking classes, hikes and a variety of field trips. To see if your child may qualify and to get more information on our SNAP program, contact our nutritionist at 801-536-3672.