Dr Kiko has been working as a Giggle Doctor for 26 years. He cheers up little patients with humour and imagination.
"I bring a smile and a lighter spirit to small patients," said Enrique Sáenz Ráez, aka Dr Kiko. The Giggle Doctor feels enriched by working with children. When he visits them in hospital, he immerses himself in imaginary worlds with them. He does magic tricks, invents, juggles and makes music. Often the parents are part of the game, and a doctor might get involved from time to time. "Half of my work is improvisation and the rest comes from a lot of practice in technical artistry."
Dr Kiko is originally from Peru and came to Switzerland almost thirty years ago. Dimitri the clown was the reason. As a young student, Kiko saw a show by him in Lima and was fascinated. After the performance, Kiko went to talk to Dimitri. Soon afterwards, he travelled to Ticino to be trained by Dimitri – who gave him a scholarship – at his circus school. "I had the desire to become a professional, and practised like crazy," says Kiko. "Dimitri saw my determination." Since then, Kiko has worked as an actor, clown and Giggle Doctor.
Kiko often has moving experiences in his work. One particularly beautiful experience took place many years ago: Kiko had provided support for a girl for three years in a clinic. When she was finally ready to go home, the head physician organised a little farewell for her. Everyone was happy for the eleven-year-old. Towards the end, she said to the group that as long as Dr Kiko was there, she wanted to stay. "Everyone laughed," said Kiko, "but I cried tears of joy." Moments like these are the best reward for his work.
As a partner of the Theodora Foundation, we support the valuable work of the Giggle Doctors. With this partnership, Helsana contributes to enabling more than 8,000 children to enjoy a few carefree moments each month. That means that yearly more than 100,000 children in hospitals and specialist care centers all over Switzerland enjoy visits from the Theodora Giggle Doctors.