Teenager hits right chord for sick bubs
by Jack Lawrie for The Cairns Post
Thursday January 16 2020
A YOUNG Cairns harp player is using her music to soothe little patients in care at the Cairns Hospital Special Care Baby Unit.
Cairns High School Year 9 student Hannah Burnett has been playing her harp in the nursery two days a week over the school holidays.
The 13-year-old approached the hospital staff asking if she could play in the ward and has been playing for an hour a day, two days a week for the last four weeks.
“I just really love helping people and I played in the children’s ward on Christmas,” she said.
“Both of my parents work in the hospital, so after months of nagging, they eventually went to the people here and asked for me.”
“The people here are really vulnerable, the parents are having a tough time – I just wanted to come and help the children here.”
Nurse unit manager Jonelle Mayers said parents and staff had enjoyed her playing, finding it a calming relief from the stress of having a baby in hospital.
“There’s a lot of evidence to support the positive effects of music therapy in healthcare settings,” she said.
“Unfortunately, we don’t have a music therapist here at Cairns, so we seize the opportunity when we have enthusiastic students like Hannah approach us.”