Lanterns for spring

Lanterns for spring

Weldmar celebrated the start of spring 2013 with a lantern procession at Joseph Weld Hospice

The 20th March 2013 was the first day of spring, and the Arts Team at Weldmar Hospicecare decided to mark the occasion. As the spring equinox reminds us of the turning of the seasons, winter followed by spring and the growing light, we decided that a lantern event would be a fitting celebration.

The Arts Team at Weldmar is made up of four members of staff that work in a variety of ways; arts and crafts, arts therapy, life story work. We all work to provide opportunities for patients and families to find alternative ways of expressing themselves during a time which can be emotionally challenging.

For this project the team ran workshops for patients, families, carers, those who have been bereaved as well as for staff and volunteers. We worked in day care settings as well as on the in-patient unit. Some groups decided to build lanterns together. Made of willow and strong tissue paper, these lanterns were designed to be held rather than let off into the sky. Consequently their imaginations were their only limit. Groups built a 2 metre long dragonfly and butterfly, there was a phoenix decorated with multi-coloured sweet wrappers and even a cockerel. Many others made their own individual lanterns.

About 100 people arrived on the night to carry their lanterns and to process through the gardens at Joseph Weld Hospice. Local musicians accompanied the procession and at the finish Reverend Sally Bedborough told a story about how life is made up of both light and dark .

To end the evening Dr Richard Sloan accompanied everyone on the guitar while they sang, “Here comes the sun”. Dawn the following day was met with dark skies and rain, but going by all the lanterns lighting up the gardens of Joseph Weld, surely the sun is on its way!

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