2018-02-09 / Front Page

Hannah’s Garden to provide peace during tumultuous times

By Cathy Cobbs

Hannah and Ron Rogers Hannah and Ron Rogers Often beautiful things come from tragic circumstances. Hannah’s Garden is the personification of that evolution.

Hannah and Ron Rogers lost their son, Kevin, at the age of 46 to gastric cancer in June of 2013. An avid gardener whose home has been featured on many Columbia home tours, Hannah found solace in working the plants throughout that tragedy. She was then inspired to create a beautiful environment where children and adults could find peace dur ing the tumultuous times that surround treatment and recovery—and thus, the idea for Hannah’s Garden was born.

The garden will be located on the rooftop outside the Kevin Berry Rogers Children’s Infusion Center, where children receive treatment for cancer and blood disorders. The 300- square foot space will feature Mexican beach stone, water features, benches, and native South Carolina plants.

“Hannah’s Garden will give children who are undergoing treatment for cancer or blood disorders a safe environment to enjoy nature,” said Maria DeHart, who works with the Palmetto Health Foundation. “It will also be a beautiful place for adults and siblings as they process difficult news or need some respite from the pressures associated with their journey.”

According to a statement on Palmetto Health’s website about the garden, the Rogers have been long-time supporters of the hospital, even before their son became ill.

“Their support during the Children’s Hospital capital campaign was an investment in our state’s first and only freestanding children’s hospital in 2008. The Rogers’s gift to the Children’s Hospital Palliative Care Program, known as COMPASS, helped elevate the program, designed to prevent and relieve suffering of children with life-limiting, chronic conditions,” the statement said. “After the loss of their son, Kevin, to cancer, the Rogers made a $500,000 gift to match a gift from Aflac to support the Endowed Chair for the Pediatric Hematology/ Oncology Medical Director. In recognition of the generous gift, the Rogers named the Kevin Berry Rogers Infusion Center in the Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital after their son.”

The idea for the garden evolved from a conversation between Hannah and a nurse manager in 2015, and it really became a reality when the Rogers made a lead challenge gift of $250,000, according to DeHart.

Already $340,000 in private donations and grants have been raised for phase one of the garden, and DeHart said she is hoping the initial $ 285,000 will be forthcoming by the end of the first quarter. The foundation is also looking for individuals and/or groups to help maintain the garden after its completion.

To learn more about how you can support the Rogers Garden, contact DeHar t at Palmetto Health Foundation at 803-296-2175 or Maria. DeHart@PalmettoHealth.org.

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