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Bronson Children's Hospital aims to renovate playroom

Bronson Children's Hospital is raising funds through their annual 5K to renovate the playroom.

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - The annual 5K Run to support Bronson Children's Hospital is coming up this month, and this year, organizers are focusing all of their efforts on playtime.

The playroom at Bronson's is a place for kids to unwind and forget about their medical issues for a short time. But at 17 years old, it is in need of a major upgrade and that is where the community comes in.

Malachai Stancle, 6, is no stranger to hospital rooms. His mother, Quelsea Cromwell says he was born with his intestines on the outside of his body, and has undergone multiple surgeries in his short life.

One place that has helped with his long stays is the playroom at Bronson Children's Hospital.

"This place is really good for him," said Cromwell. "Having somewhere to come and feel like a kid again is so important for him."

But the playroom needs some work, so the funds from this year's 5K will go to a complete makeover.

"It is very outdated. It's 17 years old and so it needs a refresh," said Terry Morrow, the Vice President of Development and Community Health at Bronson. "We are trying to raise money to create a new teen area and an area that is safe for infants and toddlers."

The new space and updated toys will make a big difference for young patients like Malachai, and make things easier for life specialist Corey Richardson.

"The best way for them to heal is to get up and play and engage in things that they would normally do at home," said Richardson. "So getting them out of their room and into the playroom really helps their body start healing."

This year's 5K walk and run is happening Sunday, September 24. Bronson Children's Hospital hopes to raise $160,000 for the playroom remodel and to support other efforts at the hospital.

To donate or join a team, visit here.

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