SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — Families will now have the chance to spend some more time outside while at Memorial Health’s Dwaine and Cynthia Willett Children’s Hospital of Savannah.
The new Sunshine Park and Healing Garden opened Friday. The design will help stimulate children’s senses with an interactive digital wall, sensory playboat, musical instruments and flower garden.
“There’s not another one like it. In the southeast, there’s not a play area and healing garden like this anywhere,” Children’s Hospital donor Cynthia Willet told WSAV NOW. “Like I always said, this is a first-class children’s hospital, and this is the icing on the cake.”
Many of the patients had the chance to see the hospital for the first time Friday after watching it be built for months from their windows.
“It’s another wonderful day here at the Children’s Hospital,” Willet said. “To know that people can get out of the clinical areas and come out and have peace and reflection or play or prayer.”
“It’s just not the toys it’s just not the boat, it’s just being outdoors and enjoying life,” she added.
Kristen King, Child Life Manager at the hospital, says their main priority while designing the garden was to make it accessible for all.
“No matter if a child has limited mobility, or sight or hearing, there is something for them in this outdoor space to invite them to relax and play. They intentionally brought in aromatic fragrance from florals that they worked with a landscaper on,” King said.
“So really unique touches that you may not be able to see but kids will be able to experience,” she added. “That’s why they have some of the sound features, a ramp so we can use it to get onto the boat, regardless if a child is in a wheelchair or has their IV pole. So it really becomes very inclusive.”
“It’s for everyone. It’s for the siblings, for the child, and it invites the whole family to have a moment together,” said King.
The ribbon cutting event was complete with a visit from Leopold’s Ice Cream.
CLICK HERE to watch a virtual tour of the new medical center.