Fair   41.0F  |  Forecast »

New Healing Butterfly Garden At U-M Mott Children's Hospital in Ann Arbor

The new butterfly garden offers its little patients peace and hope during their stay at the hospital

The University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital in Ann Arbor is known for offering treatments to heal the bodies of young patients, but now it's offering medicine of a different kind.

The new 1,000-square-foot Healing Butterfly Garden, which opened this summer in the courtyard near the Old Mott Hospital, is a tranquil oasis in a world of IV drips, poking, prodding and sometimes pain that comes from being a child with an illness. It's also a perfect place for patients' families to have a moment of serenity amidst the worry.

Featuring 30 species of butterflies and over 25 types of trees, shrubs and flowers, the garden was the brainchild of U-M staff specialist Brendon Weil, who had a butterfly garden growing up and created one at home for his own kid, and Susan Fisher, radiology grants coordinator.

"She told me how she had given a friend who was a cancer patient a caterpillar. Her friend found great comfort in observing the lifecycle of the caterpillar as it transformed into a chrysalis and then a butterfly," he wrote at UofMHealthBlogs.org. "Like Susan's friend, many patients relate to those transformations when they experience their own changes as they go through the healing process. A light bulb popped in my head – wouldn't it be great if we could bring this experience to more of our patients?"

Weil applied for a Fostering Innovation Grant at Mott. Every spring and fall, $125,000 is distributed among the best applications submitted by faculty and staff. Weil's application was among those chosen for the grant money.

In addition to the garden, Mott has launched The Butterfly Explorer Summer Program, which allows children in the hospital to check out backpacks filled with the tools for a garden scavenger hunt. For kids who are unable to go out to the garden, there are butterfly-related crafts every Tuesday at the hospital.

Add your comment:
Advertisement

More »Latest Articles & Blog Posts

'Breaking Bad' Action Figures Pulled from Toys R Us Shelves

'Breaking Bad' Action Figures Pulled from Toys R Us Shelves

After a Florida mom petitioned on Change.org for the toy store chain to stop selling the dolls from the AMC TV show, the toy store has agreed.

Starry Nights and Snowman Fun: Winter Crafts with Olaf, More

Starry Nights and Snowman Fun: Winter Crafts with Olaf, More

Turn a white sock or marshmallows into everyone's favorite goofball from Frozen or gear up for snowy evenings with a constellation lightbox and table runner.

Kids and Indoor Exercise During Cooler Temperatures

Kids and Indoor Exercise During Cooler Temperatures

Keep your kids off the couch this winter and get them active and healthy with these family-friendly fitness tips from the community program director at the Macomb Family YMCA.

Sage Yet Strange 1920s Baby-Naming Advice

Sage Yet Strange 1920s Baby-Naming Advice

Modern flapper era mamas had plenty of progressive advice. But when it came to baby name tips, it was a mixed bag. (And especially tough for poor Lenora!)

Dessert Pizzas Recipes That Kids Will Love

Dessert Pizzas Recipes That Kids Will Love

Slice into sweetness with these kid-friendly ideas – thanks to Betty Crocker, Taste of Home and more – that transform pizza into something oh-so-sweet!

Rustic Pumpkin Lunch Bag Halloween Craft for Kids

Rustic Pumpkin Lunch Bag Halloween Craft for Kids

Lunch surprises can brighten kids' day at school. As October rolls along, try something fun and new with this sweet, not-scary jack-o'-lantern sack.

Mom Transforms into 'Annabelle' Doll for Creepy Photo Shoot

Mom Transforms into 'Annabelle' Doll for Creepy Photo Shoot

One suburban mom embraced horror movie season when she dressed up as an evil doll for a photo shoot – an artistic expression that is drawing mixed reactions.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement