Koala Kids recently sponsored Dr Maria McCarthy, director of the psycho-oncology program Children’s Cancer Centre at The Royal Children’s Hospital and the team of nine child life therapists to be trained ways of using Persona dolls.   Therapists and or children have the ability to create stories behind each Persona Dollsas a way to engage children and encourage them to talk about ideas, experiences and feelings in a safe space.

Four dolls were delivered to Maria and the team earlier this month.

“The beautiful hand-made dolls are made in Paarl, South Africa by an all women group – including pattern cutters, seamstresses, wig makers and finishers – who share our vision and feel very much part of the project.  They are from a disadvantaged, rural and under resourced area and are trained and supervised by Juanita Bosch, a highly skilled doll maker and manager.

“Most of the dolls’ clothes, including all trousers, dresses, knickers and some of the t-shirts are made by Milly Parker, also in South Africa. Milly is in her nineties is still making clothes for us!” Vicki Hutchin, acting coordinator told us.