Many children and families come to Norton Children Hospital at their most vulnerable time. Children in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and children with conditions such as congenital heart disease and childhood cancer may have extended stays. Forging memories, building relationships with caregivers and collecting special keepsakes — all can be a part of the patient experience. To provide families and the community with a lasting keepsake, Norton Children’s Hospital commissioned a local artist group — Often Seen, Rarely Spoken — to create an interactive mural to remind all who enter that hope happens every day at the hospital.
“Families like to save little things from their child’s stay,” said Emmett C. Ramser, chief administrative officer of Norton Children’s Hospital. “I’ve seen families make scrapbooks about their child’s time here. The mural gives families and visitors a way to celebrate hope or discharge, or have photos of all of the visitors a child had during a stay. There are so many ways for families and visitors to use this mural to make memories that will last.”
Take a photo of yourself at Norton Children’s Hospital
We hope that when children and families visit the hospital for any reason, they will want to snap a photo with the mural, tag @nortonchildrens, and use the hashtag #wherehopeblooms on social media posts.
The “Where Hope Blooms” mural is 25 feet by 15 feet and took two months to design. The mural depicts an outdoor scene, with a bouquet of flowers that ascends skyward, along with many flowers, butterflies and the Norton Children’s “Just for Kids” balloon. Visitors can “hold” the bouquet, or simply stand together in front of the mural for a photo. The hospital’s stairs have two spots painted on the ground to show visitors where they can stand to take the perfect keepsake photo.
The mural was completed Feb. 14. Olivia Stewart, a 12-year-old with a heart condition, helped the artists to put the finishing touches on the mural at the hospital’s main entrance on Chestnut Street. The mural project took a week to complete, with five artists from Often Seen, Rarely Spoken working on the project with seven gallons of paint and 40 cans of spray paint.