Patient turns Crocs designer in OT Art therapy

Ruks was living in South London, working as a support worker for people recovering from strokes when she herself had a devastating stroke.

Arriving at the Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability (RHN) for rehabilitation, Ruks was completely unable to move or speak. The RHN’s Compass Assistive and Rehabilitation Technology service provided her with a special eye gaze computer.

This technology allows her to communicate with her carers, therapists and family by blinking at a computer screen to create words and sentences that the programme speaks and types out.

An intensive programme of physiotherapy and occupational therapy was created for Ruks. During her sessions in the hospital’s art room she decided to fulfil a lifelong ambition to design her own shoes.

With help from Occupational Therapy Art Assistant, Krystyna, Ruk’s decorated a pair of white Crocs in a ripple design of rainbow colours. Using a combination of paints and marker pens, her project has become so popular that Ruks now has been commissioned to decorate two more pairs of shoes.

Thanks to her rehabilitation programme and her team of therapists’ dedication and enthusiasm, Ruks has regained some movement in one of her wrists. Her pride in her shoe design project is obvious, and her interest in it has boosted her self-esteem.

Ruks will continue with her therapy in the art room, along with many other patients, whose work you can glimpse below or on our Instagram.


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View patient artwork

All this is possible thanks to our generous supporters and funding. As the RHN’s art room is entirely funded by donations.

The art room provides therapeutic and recreational art sessions on a one-to-one and group basis for any patients who want to take part. Projects can range from painting and drawing, to model making, fabric printing and ceramic works. Patients create pieces for their own enjoyment, or as gifts to give to friends and family.

If you would like to support our patients with a donation to the art room, visit the link here.