The Cabin is Officially Open!
The Young People’s Cabin is officially open!
We recently hosted an official opening ceremony for The Cabin – a new, dedicated space for bereaved children and young people across Leeds. The Cabin sits within the Hospice gardens in Moortown and has been designed with sustainability in mind.
The event was hosted by St Gemma’s Chief Executive, Kerry Jackson. Invited guests included donors who had made significant contributions towards the creation of The Cabin, patrons, and the architects, so they could see their vision as a reality. This follows our soft launch earlier in the summer for the children who had contributed to the design and naming of The Cabin.
Marilyn Stowe made the biggest single donation towards the building. She said it was her privilege to be able to support local children facing the loss of a parent. Marilyn dedicated her donation to her grandmother whose own mother died when she was a child.
James Arkle of ArkleBoyce Architects said a few words about how they loved working on the project and with the children to bring their ideas to life.
Nic Colgan from the St Gemma’s Young People’s Service welcomed Abbie Stone and Jacob Newson to cut the ribbons to open The Cabin. Both Abbie and Jacob have been supported by the service. In her speech Nic said:
“Since I joined St Gemma’s 8 years ago, we have been talking about the importance of children having a safe, informal and creative space to allow them to explore their feelings and express their emotions. Sitting in a meeting room opposite a child and discussing difficult issues just feels too formal – not to mention the difficulties of trying to clean up glue and glitter from the carpet!
“The Cabin has been designed to ensure that the children have a beautiful, natural and safe space where they can be themselves, and so we can explore their emotions and give them the space and support they need at an often incredibly tough time.
“I’m so proud to see Abbie and Jacob here today. I have known Abbie for many years, I knew her mum, Jo and we built a strong relationship to help her navigate some very difficult times. We used to cook, bake, knit together, as Abbie preferred to do more practical things whilst we talked. This space would have really benefited her and her family at the time but we still made lots of special memories with the whole family. Abbie is incredible young woman, graduate, teacher, it is such a wonderful moment to have her here tonight to cut the ribbon and to open The Cabin.
“Jacob is this smart young pilot of the future, and it’s been our privilege to support Jacob since his mum died. Jacob lives his life to the full, taking on challenges, enjoying the outdoors and conquering whatever he tries. He loves attending our activity-based events and The Cabin will provide Jacob and the other children a much more interesting and open space to play, talk and relax together. He has a passion for all things planes, and with his dad Andrew they are flying the flag for St Gemma’s by raising incredible amounts for the Hospice. We are all really proud of his achievements. Jacob will join Abbie to cut the ribbon together.”
To see more of this fantastic new addition to the Hospice, visit www.st-gemma.co.uk/young-peoples-cabin