A new youth-friendly section of the waiting area, the entertainment zone, offers calming activities for the smallest visitors of the Emergency Department at PeaceHealth St Joseph Medical Center in Bellingham.
In partnership with the PeaceHealth St Joseph Medical Center Foundation, the entertainment zone renovation and furnishings were generously made possible by the Chelsey Ebert Trust.
The hospital environment was one that Chelsey, a Ferndale High School student, and her family knew all too well. Born with a congenital heart defect and diagnosed with osteosarcoma cancer 7 months prior to her passing at age 15 in 2007, Chelsey was a frequent patient at Seattle Children’s Hospital.
“We know how much it meant to our family to have kid-centered activities for Chelsey and her siblings during those difficult times,” her father explained. “If we can give that experience to just one Whatcom County family, it’s worth it.”
The entertainment zone provides distraction and comfort to youth of all ages—from toddlers to teens—amidst the frightening Emergency Department setting as they or a loved one wait for care.
The entertainment zone includes wall-based play equipment, child-sized chairs and tables, coloring materials and a television to entertain youth of all ages.
The PeaceHealth St Joseph Medical Center Foundation’s Healing through Art program provided for a mural entitled “Tree of Life” by Bellingham Artist Mary Ennes Davis that invites visitors to find hidden items.
The entertainment zone denotes the culminating project of the Chelsey Ebert Trust. After nearly 12 years of supporting scholarships, special projects, community programs and nonprofit organizations, it was time to end on a high note, her father reported.
“The Chelsey Ebert Trust has truly been made possible by the ‘village’ of local support that has surrounded us for over a decade. It has been an honor to carry forward everything she epitomized to better our community,” Ebert said. “The process of creating the children’s waiting room area was healing for our entire family. It represents one final way that Chelsey continues to make a difference. In this space, her legacy lives on.”
PeaceHealth is a not-for-profit Catholic health system offering care to communities in Washington, Oregon and Alaska.