Healing

Hasbro Children’s Hospital Completes New Healing Garden and Playground

PROVIDENCE, R.I., Oct. 9, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Hasbro Children’s Hospital announced the completion of the Balise Healing Garden and reimagined playground. The space was made possible by donor support and generous gifts to the Every Child, Every Day campaign, and partners Starlight Children’s Foundation, CVS Pharmacy, Colgate-Palmolive Company, and TerraCycle.

“We know there’s a correlation between spending time outside and the healing journey for children – that a place for respite brings normalcy to a child’s hospital stay,” said Timothy J. Babineau, MD, President and CEO of Lifespan. “We are thankful to all of our incredible supporters whose generous philanthropy made this transformation a reality. Hasbro Children’s has truly been built by our community, for our community.”

Located outside the hospital’s lower level, the Balise Healing Garden and conjoined playground are 29,000 sq. ft. and feature a raised bed teaching garden and re-worked Healing Arts Theatre with stadium-style benches and chimes and drums for patients to express themselves.

The playground, including swings and a climb-on structure with a wheelchair accessible slide, is located nearby. Built on a cushioned base, the equipment is constructed from recycled materials, including oral care products collected through a nationwide recycling initiative. For 3-months, consumers were asked to recycle their oral care products through CVS Pharmacy and TerraCycle to help their state win a playground for a Starlight partner pediatric facility. Rhode Island recycled more waste than any other state, and Hasbro Children’s received the grand prize.

“We were able to help build this wonderful playground for families at Hasbro Children’s while incentivizing recycling among our CVS Pharmacy customers,” said Eileen Howard Boone, SVP of Corporate Social Responsibility & Philanthropy and Chief Sustainability Officer at CVS Health. “It’s a win-win for everyone, most importantly the countless children who will enjoy the playground for years to come.”

‘The Farm,’ a healing garden at Pennington Cancer Center, honors a beloved wife, mother and friend | Home/Garden

Charlotte Ferguson Murrell loved the outdoors — gardening, raising chickens and working on the tract of land, where she and her husband, George, raised their three children.

The former pediatric nurse also loved her coffee club of friends, close for more than 30 years.

When the 54-year-old Murrell died two years ago from colon cancer, some coffee club members decided, as a memorial, to spruce up the coffee service at the Baton Rouge General Pennington Cancer Center of Bluebonnet Boulevard, where the young wife and mother had spent many hours in treatment.

Then George Murrell designated the cancer center as a place where friends and family members could make donations in his wife’s memory.

The money poured in.

“It was unlike anything we have seen,” said Erik Showalter, president of the Baton Rouge General Foundation. “Contributions came from all over the country.”

That’s when the small, thoughtful project grew into a big, thought-filled project that patients and families will enjoy for many years to come.

“Our little coffee service project snowballed into a lovely healing garden,” said Leslie Gladney, who worked on the project with fellow coffee clubbers Pamela Gladney, Cheryl Kirchoff and Connie Miller.

The garden is nestled in a space between the buildings that house Pennington’s Infusion Center and the oncology waiting room at the Baton Rouge General Medical Center, just off Bluebonnet Boulevard. 

A balm to the senses, the garden is filled with white and pink flowers including a Natchez crepe myrtle, sweet olives, boxwoods, hydrangeas, foxtail ferns, azaleas, Shi Shi camellias, yew and agapanthus, along with blooming annuals. 

“The plan is to have something blooming year-round and something with a soft scent year-round,” Leslie Gladney said.

They’ve even given the tranquil spot a name.

“Charlotte was a farm girl, so we decided to call the garden

The Secret Garden and the healing power of nature

Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden has been described as “the most significant children’s book of the 20th century.”

First published in 1911, after being serialised in The American Magazine, it was dismissed by one critic at the time as simple and lacking “plenty of excitement”. The novel is, in fact, a sensitive and complex story, which explores how a relationship with nature can foster our emotional and physical well-being. It also reveals anxieties about national identity at a time of the British Empire, drawing on ideas of Christian Science.

The Secret Garden has been read by generations, remains a fixture on children’s publishing lists today and has inspired several film versions. A new film, starring Colin Firth, Dixie Egerickx and Amir Wilson, updates the story in some ways for modern audiences.

2020 movie still, a tree covered in pink flowers
A scene from the new movie version of the book.
Studiocanal

The book opens as nine-year-old Mary Lennox is discovered abandoned in an Indian bungalow following her parents’ deaths during a cholera outbreak. Burnett depicts India as a site of permissive behaviour, illness and lassitude:

[Mary’s] hair was yellow, and her face was yellow because she had been born in India and had always been ill in one way or another.

Mary is “disagreeable”, “contrary”, “selfish” and “cross”. She makes futile attempts at gardening, planting hibiscus blossoms into mounds of earth. The Ayah tasked with caring for Mary and the other “native servants … always obeyed Mary and gave her her own way in everything.”

On the death of her parents, Mary is sent to live with her reclusive uncle Archibald Craven at Misselthwaite Manor in Yorkshire.

Mary’s arrival in England proves a shock. The “blunt frankness” of the Yorkshire servants – in contrast to those in India – checks her behaviour. Martha Sowerby, an outspoken young housemaid,

Healing Garden continues to grow with the help of volunteers

The sweat is as thick on his brow as the sentiment is in his voice.

Eddie Schmitz pulls out his cellphone to underscore why he’s here on this Tuesday morning in September, the temperature steadily rising in unison with the emotion with which he speaks.

On its screen flashes a picture of a Canadian mother of two.

She lost her life on Oct. 1, 2017.

“Yesterday, it was Tera Roe’s birthday,” Schmitz says of the Route 91 Harvest festival shooting victim. “On my Facebook page, every single birthday, they’re honored on my page,” he notes, scrolling through one memorial after the next. “Every single one of them.”

Healing Garden volunteers Sue Ann Cornwell, left, and Alicia Mierke work Sept. 14 on restoring ...
Healing Garden volunteers Sue Ann Cornwell, left, and Alicia Mierke work Sept. 14 on restoring memorial trellises for victims of the Route 91 Harvest festival shooting. (Elizabeth Page Brumley / Las Vegas Review-Journal)

Schmitz stands in the center of the Healing Garden, the verdant downtown oasis created in honor of those who died during the tragedy in question, populated by 58 trees for 58 victims (There is talk of adding a memorial to the garden to honor any further victims, as there is no room for any more trees).

Built in just five days after the worst night in the city’s history, it stands as a testament to a community coming together in a time of unprecedented sadness and loss, an enduring patch of serenity catalyzed by the opposite.

“Over 400 people were working 24 hours a day to build that from nothing, from a little plot of land that the city owned,” Mayor Carolyn Goodman says. “They worked around the clock. It’s a beautiful thing.”

As the third anniversary of the massacre approaches, the garden is undergoing a transformation — cement is being poured; cinder blocks are being stacked.

It’s doing so