Healing Garden Ribbon Cutting held in Atlantic


August 2nd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Members of the Atlantic Ambassadors and Cass County Health System staff were on hand this (Thursday) morning, during a grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony for the Cass County Memorial Hospital’s new “Healing Garden.”

Dawn Marnin cuts the ribbon, with Atlantic Ambassadors

Dawn Marnin, Cass County Hospital Memorial Foundation Director, said the project was made possible at the start, by a gift from the Al and Chris Wernimont family. Al and his family wanted to help provide the healing feature at CCMH after they experienced the benefits of a natural setting during his cancer treatments.  It’s designed as a quiet space, where family members can go while their loved ones are in the hospital.  Marnin says there are measurable benefits to a Healing Garden, such as improving mood, reducing blood pressure, slowing the heart rate, relaxation of muscles, and the perception pain is lessened.

A view of the Healing Garden

Dawn says there have been a number of donations in support of the project, including nearly all of the Cass County Health System employees.  She says she asked for 100-percent participation from their employees, and received 90-percent, which Marnin says is “absolutely huge.” She says the Atlantic and the residents of Cass County have been extremely supportive as well. The goal was to raise $300,000. At last report, Marnin says they had raised nearly $250,000. She thanked everyone who contributed any amount they could for the project.

Another view of the Healing Garden at CCMH

Dawn says people are often surprised by the garden and the effect it has.  It’s equipped with trickling water fountains, colorful flowers, trees, shrubs, ornamental grasses and a pergola for shade. There’s also an outdoor barbeque, which is designed for families who have to make an extended stay while their loved one is receiving treatment, but for hospital employee recognition events.  Donations are still being accepted to help pay for the Healing Garden, which Marnin says will eventually be open 24-hours per day.

Opportunities are also still available for you to purchase walkway paving bricks, bubbler fountains, and other amenities. For more information, call 71-243-7409, or go to www.casshealth.org.