Good bye, Bethesda, I'm recovered!

Good bye, Bethesda, I'm recovered!

2023/04/26 Good to know

Half of the rooms in the wards of Bethesda Children’s Hospital, located on the edge of the City Park, overlook the park, and the balloon evoking Pál Szinyei Merse’s famous painting has become the symbol of recovery and of being discharged from hospital. Thanks to an agreement, as many as one thousand children in need of long-term hospitalisation can bid farewell to the hospital with a “bye-bye, illness” balloon ride every year. 

The special therapeutic teams and chronically ill child patients are also given this shared experience as a joint gift after their therapy is over. On average, twelve thousand children are cured at the inpatient wards of Bethesda Children’s Hospital every year, while the outpatient department serves 160 thousand children annually.

The initiative, which is envisioned to start a tradition, will provide the opportunity for every child who needs to be hospitalised here for more than two weeks to rise into the sky in the City Park BalloonFly with one of his/her parents and a therapist, helping them to say good-bye to the pain they endured.


“From the very start, the Liget Budapest Project treated social responsibility and equal access as important priorities. In the planning stage of the project, we met with representatives from 140 non-profit organisations and integrated more than 90 percent of their five hundred recommendations during the implementation phase”, said Benedek Gyorgyevics, CEO of Városliget Zrt.


“We cure an average of twelve thousand children at the inpatient departments of Bethesda Children’s Hospital every year. About one thousand of them need to stay here for an extended period, and for them symbols, taking a break, and celebrating are especially important, as they help to make their physical and mental healing last. This is why we were so grateful to see the positive response to our initiative from Városliget Zrt. and BalloonFly,” said Dr György János Velkei, Director-General of Bethesda Children’s Hospital.


An aerial attraction, which enjoyed great popularity even 120 years ago, has returned to the City Park with BalloonFly, whose design and colours evoke Pál Szinyei Merse’s iconic painting of a balloon. After its first take-off, it virtually instantly became Budapest’s new and happy symbol, received enthusiastically by people in Budapest and visitors from abroad.


“Since its return to the City Park, we have been witnessing how the mere sight of the Balloon cheers everyone up. This is why we are especially pleased that this positive energy can be channelled into the recovery of ill children thanks to our cooperation,” said Balázs Nagy, the manager of BalloonFly, the company operating the balloon lookout.


The costs of the ballooning trips realised within the framework of this cooperation are jointly borne by Liget Budapest and BalloonFly.