The final components recently put into place include a bronze plaque that welcomes visitors and describes the intent of the space, and bamboo fencing that gives some privacy and a visual separation from the parking lot next door.
These two features were the final additions to the space in the front yard at Hospice that contains a wood-covered stone altar, beautiful hand-carved marble swan, circular paving-stone patio, and two wooden benches nestled under the trees.
The space is immediately inviting. The plaque reads: “Welcome… This is a place for quiet reflection and healing. It is here for all of us, especially during times of loss. May you find peace and solace.”
Staff, volunteers and clients have been exploring different ways to use the space. Staff and volunteers have gathered there to remember a client who has died. Sometimes a client has rung the bell that hangs above the stone swan in memory of a loved one. Recently, several Healing Touch volunteers gathered to honour the life of a shared client who died.
Our hope is that the Peaceful Place will be thought of as a place to gather, to reflect, and to heal. It is open to the general public and is a beautiful place to contemplate and honour our losses.
The Peaceful Place was conceived of and built by local artist and Hospice volunteer Josh Lesage. While travelling in India he was inspired at the simple reflection of spirituality present all around in shrines, prayer flags, prayer wheels, statues, etc. His aim was to design and create a public space in Whitehorse that invites ritual and contemplation into our everyday lives. Hospice Yukon is pleased to host The Peaceful Place as a kind of ‘contemporary shrine’ that is accessible to all.