In 2014, Sister M. Dianna Hell, Mission Leader, and Lee Boyles, Administrator, worked with Philip Homan, local Architect, on the design for the Healing Garden at the CHI Oakes Hospital, and the CHI Oakes Hospital Auxiliary raised funds to make the plans reality. The Healing Garden was a passion of Sister Dianna’s and she worked diligently to have her dream become a reality. She saw the Healing Garden as a place of reflection, relaxation, and healing of the mind, body and soul.
Healing Gardens are designed to offer comfort to patients, family and friends, in the soothing atmosphere provided by God. Surrounded by fresh air, sunshine, flowers and trees, patients have shown a remarkably more rapid recovery from illness – this includes shorter post-operative stays, as well as fewer complications from nausea and headaches. The opportunity to enjoy nature is directly linked to CHI Oakes Hospital’s mission to provide quality health care. Research shows that respiratory rates slow and deepen, heart and pulse rates go down and brain waves changed to a more relaxed state.
The CHI Oakes Hospital healing garden includes a statue of the Blessed Mother Mary, a waterfall, and the original marble from the front of the old hospital. A walkway intertwines throughout the shrubs, shade trees, and benches, allowing patients to stroll outdoors, admire the beauty of nature, or simply enjoy the garden with visitors. The garden is be open to all patients, families, friends, visitors and employees to use as a place of peace and reflection.
In 2017 a Community Orchard was added to the grounds in partnership with Dickey County Extension. There are many fruit trees planted for the community’s enjoyment. Annually the Dickey County Master Gardeners maintain the gardens and orchard and sponsor a butterfly release to pollinate the flowers and trees.
Monetary memorials may be given to maintain the Healing Garden. The purchase of an identified object in the garden, such as a memorial bench, tree, or shrub should be discussed with Hospital Administration. Donations or memorials earmarked for the Healing Garden can be dropped off or mailed to the hospital.