(EFFINGHAM, IL) – HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital invited community members to join them for a Butterfly Release on Thursday, May 25 at 6:30 p.m. in the hospital Healing Garden. Butterflies previously purchased by area residents will be released during the service in honor or in memory of their loved ones. A short reception will follow.
For the second year in a row, HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital has partnered with St. Anthony Grade School to raise butterflies from larvae to caterpillar to pupa (Chrysalis) then to butterflies. Kelly Sager, HSHS St. Anthony’s Chief Nursing Officer, and her family donated butterfly larvae to the eighth grade classrooms at St. Anthony Grade School. The students watched the butterflies grow in concert with their classroom education to study the life cycle of butterflies, led by their teacher Dustin Overbeck.
Sager shared why the hospital wanted to collaborate with St. Anthony Grade School on this project. “HSHS St. Anthony’s has always been supportive of education in our community, as demonstrated by our School Wellness Program where we teach healthy habits to third grade students, as well as providing vision and hearing screenings free of charge to area school children,” she said. “This is just another way we support area education as well as collaborate with our community.”
The butterflies that the students hatched were shown in a live butterfly display at the Butterfly Ball hosted by the HSHS St. Anthony’s Foundation on April 22 at the Thelma Keller Convention Center. All proceeds from the Butterfly Ball benefit HSHS Hospice Southern Illinois. Guests at the ball were invited to “purchase” a butterfly in honor of or in memory of a loved one. The “purchased” butterflies will be released in the hospital Healing Garden on May 25.
“The butterfly has become an international symbol for hospice care over the years as it represents the transformation of the spirit,” Ashley Dillingham, Marketing Specialist for HSHS Hospice Southern Illinois. “We look forward to sharing in this special time with our community.”
For more information about HSHS Home Care Southern Illinois or HSHS Hospice Southern Illinois, visit hshshospice.org.
HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital is part of the Southern Illinois Division of Hospital Sisters Health System, which also includes HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Belleville, HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Breese, HSHS Holy Family Hospital in Greenville, and HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Highland.