Patients at Rady Children's Swim with Dolphins

Posted at 10:29 PM, Sep 18, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-19 02:12:18-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- Seven patients from Rady Children’s Hospital took a break from their treatment and got in the water with Bottlenose dolphins.

SeaWorld trainer Jorge Villa hosted the children for the experience. Villa holds a special place in his heart for Rady Children’s because he was treated there when he was diagnosed with Diabetes at the age of 12.

For many of the children, it’s therapeutic and offers them a chance to forget about whatever health challenges they face and focus on being a kid.

“It just brings you into the playful childishness that you have in your heart and in your mind,” said Juliana Abraham, 14. 

She’s been fighting a rare form of brain cancer.  Her mom says faith, prayer, and a positive attitude have helped Juliana persevere.

Rady has been offering the dolphin interaction program to patients since 2008. It was first inspired by SeaWorld dolphin trainer and cancer survivor Joy Clausen-Soto.

For more information on the program, contact Rady Children’s Hospital at 858-576-1700.