Columbus, OH,
14:00 PM

Healing garden created for cancer patients

This spring, OhioHealth expanded services at the Delaware Health Center to include radiation oncology and is now offering comprehensive cancer care in the Delaware community.

The medical work happening in that space to beat cancer is certainly the biggest part of the battle, but studies have shown that access to natural spaces can reduce stress and improve healing for patients. With that in mind, the OhioHealth Foundation got to work on a plan to make a healing garden for cancer patients in Delaware come to life.

“The idea for the Cancer Care Healing Garden came from Anna Hensley, Chief Operating Officer for OhioHealth Grady Memorial Hospital,” Betsy Ralley, OhioHealth Philanthropy Director, Grady Memorial Hospital, said. “Her experience working on the construction of the Bing Cancer Center, she thought it would be a great addition, and we knew philanthropy would play a major role.”

From there, Ralley and others reached out to some of the local businesses in Delaware to see if they wanted to get on board with the project. The reaction was magical.

“As a company, Oberfield’s wants to give back,” Matt Moore of Oberfield’s LLC said. “Cancer is such a nasty disease, and it hits so many families. This project is a great way for us to support our community and provide a quiet place for patients and their families to get away and ease the stress of treatment.”

They started to put together a plan. Pavers, aggregate, soil, all mapped out for the project, and almost entirely donated.

Once Oberfield’s got on board, other companies quickly followed.

”My mother was a single parent who never had much but gave back every bit that she had until she was taken all too early from us due to cancer. How could we not get involved in this great project? It’s what we’re all about,” Doug Krueger of Krueger & Company said.

“Nearly everyone is touched by cancer in some way,” Scott Flores of National Lime & Stone said. “When Oberfield’s came to us and asked us to get involved, we knew it would be a great way to help the community and the patients going through treatment.”

Briarwood Landscaping, and Price Farms Organics said yes, too. Plans were made for two Saturdays to come out, get started, with each company donating time, talent, and materials.

“These partnerships allowed the project to come together much more quickly that it would have otherwise,” Ralley said. “It encouraged a level of cooperation and engagement between OhioHealth and the Delaware business community that truly shows what can happen when we work together.”

OhioHealth will continue to raise funds for the project, but the gifts will now go to expanding access to integrative medicine for cancer patients in Delaware. That includes the launch of music therapy, massage therapy, and aromatherapy at the Delaware Health Center.

Because of the work on this garden thanks to businesses and their generous donations, patients and families will benefit from this display of generosity for years to come.

“This tremendous commitment and follow through by these businesses through this entire project, it’s amazing,” Ralley said. “They have given so much, and wouldn’t quit until that project was done. Now we have a tranquil outdoor space for patients and their families to rest and rejuvenate their souls.”

Article submitted to the Delaware Gazette from OhioHealth.