Zone to Go


March 27, 2020
Topics: Child Life



Zone to Go 400

“Zone To Go” delivers smiles to Riley kids

The Child Life Zone at Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health is clearly one of the most popular destinations for kids receiving treatment. It’s a therapeutic, state-of-the-art play area featuring games, toys and activities that let kids be kids. For those patients unable to make the trip from their hospital room, “Zone To Go” delivers fun to their door.

“It’s huge. It’s super helpful,” says Jennifer Marshall of Fort Wayne, whose 4-year-old daughter Scarlett is at Riley for treatment of neuroblastoma. Scarlett needs to stay in her room in order to receive medication and protect her immune system, so her mom picks up the phone and orders from a menu featuring a variety of activities, arts and crafts. Within minutes, there is a knock at the door. “We definitely see a lot of kids waiting at the door for our volunteers to deliver,” says Child Life Specialist Kim Ziegler. “Sometimes the kids are even able to call and order themselves, which gives them a little sense of accomplishment and control of what they’ll do for the day.”

For Scarlett and many other patients, the gooey, stretchy glob known as slime is a favorite. Child Life Zone volunteers simply bag up the ingredients and deliver it to their room, where kids can mix up a batch and enjoy. “There’s something about it that relieves the stress that comes with being in the hospital,” says Scarlett’s mom. “It brings a smile to her face.”

Riley kids place about 15-20 orders each week. “Zone To Go” is especially popular when flu restrictions can keep many patients confined to their floor. Kim Ziegler says it has proven to be a great opportunity for the kids, “because it’s important for kids to be able to play, and access the Zone even though they’re not able to physically visit.”

Zone to Go


Riley Blogger

The Riley Blog is written and/or edited by members of the Riley Children's Foundation Communications Staff.


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