New music program at Kapiolani hospital helping patients heal

Make 'Em Smile program

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Studies show music can heal naturally.

“If a musician is singing something or playing music that is calming, it can help their physical body heal faster and help with pain management, help with relaxation and that’s beneficial for their heart rate,” Lead Childlife specialist Ashley Wolfe said.

Make ‘Em Smile is a brand new organization aimed at bringing local musicians into hospitals offering live music, entertainment and a smile to patients.

Wednesday was the launch of the program at Kapiolani Medical Center where a handful of children and some parents got a chance to meet and greet award-winning musician Mailani Makainai and legendary entertainer Jimmy Borges.

“Our patients and families are so excited to have our local musicians come, they are our local super stars and celebrities here and so we are really excited to see them,” Wolfe said.

The resident therapy dog Tucker was also in attendance.

The program is volunteer based and is scheduled every Wednesday and Friday at Kapiolani.

“The wonderful thing about this program, it’s completely free and the musicians donate their time, which is wonderful.  Everything about the program is free for our patients and families, it’s really special,” Wolfe said.

Kapiolani Medical Center welcomes special guest visits with patients monthly in addition to certified music therapists who work in the hospital.

“This is a little different that it will just be a performance that’s available to the patients and families and to the staff here just to help them feel comfortable help them feel relaxed and help them to enjoy their time while they are here,” Wolfe said.

“It was nice, made me feel good,” patient, Alyssa said.

For a child time in the hospital can be a traumatic and dreary experience…bringing a little song into a child’s life is hoped to lift their spirits and spark the healing process.

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