The Levindale Auxiliary has dedicated a unique sensory garden to enrich the lives of residents, employees and visitors at Levindale Hebrew Geriatric Center and Hospital by awakening their powers of sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch in a peaceful setting.
Members of the community and the Levindale family turned out for the recent ceremony to learn more about the endeavor and to enjoy the fruits of the auxiliary's labor.
The garden is filled with beautiful greenery, aromatic flowers, appetizing herbs, tranquil waterfalls, soothing music and colorful lights. This idea is based on similar models in the United States and Israel.
"Our members have been working on turning this concept into a reality for several years," explains Betsy Narrow, president of the Levindale Auxiliary. "Our mission is to provide the feelings of serenity and happiness to everyone who enters the garden. While in its infancy, we also envision the garden as the backdrop for intergenerational events and programs that teach and inspire."
The very essence of any garden is to commune with nature, but a sensory garden goes a step further by having carefully chosen elements to heighten each of the five senses.
At Levindale, there is also a special effort to make sure everyone is able to enjoy what the garden has to offer, no matter what his or her mobility and mental health capabilities are.
"On behalf of everyone at Levindale, I can't thank the auxiliary enough for its generosity. Not only did members donate the $250,000 needed to launch this retreat, but members have devoted endless time and dedication to our sensory garden," says Aric Spitulnik, president and COO of Levindale. "The group has also shown great imagination and foresight to choose such a distinctive project."
The Levindale sensory garden is still a work in progress. Other highlights include:
--Displays that will change with each season
--Different color lights to provide various perspectives depending on the time of day
--An oversize checkerboard (for visiting grandchildren)
--Benches and tables
--A trellis and a covered porch
The sensory garden is strategically placed to be a focal point of the Households at Levindale so that residents inside, as well as outside, can enjoy its beauty.
Source: Levindale Hebrew Geriatric Center