“It’s lovely hosting an event of this nature at a place where families clearly feel such a connection and sense of belonging” – a new movement sensory trail, live music and arts and crafts are among the highlights of EACH’s Treefest party

The launch of a new movement sensory trail was among the highlights as families came together for a fun-packed day of live music, dancing, arts and crafts.

The popular summer party, called Treefest, was organised by East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) and held at The Treehouse.

It took place amid a relaxed, festival-style atmosphere and was for children and families receiving care and support, as well as those who have been bereaved.

Other highlights included face painting, a barbecue and a hook-a-duck game.

The movement sensory trail was co-produced with DanceEast and inspired by Lauren Soloy’s book, The Hidden World of Gnomes.

Families used guided movement prompts to explore the hospice’s beautiful grounds, visiting a dozen different stations along the way.

DanceEast commissioning Dance Artist Lynnette King delivered workshops throughout the day, guiding children and families as they used the movement sensory trail for the first time. She was joined by two Assistant Dance Artists, along with two dancers from Involve Dance Company, for adults with learning disabilities.

Music Therapist Ray Travasso compered the day and helped organise proceedings along with Play Specialist Hailey Allen.

He said: “It was lovely to see the connection between the dancers and children.

“The trail was amazing and so unique and creative. There can’t be many like it and its legacy will go on, because we can use it again and again.

“The whole day was brilliant and there were some powerful moments.

“It’s lovely hosting an event of this nature at a place where families clearly feel such a connection and sense of belonging.”

Among the music acts was Sunset Bamboo, performing a blend of original material and classic covers, drawing on Jazz, Latin and Spanish styles, as well as a DJ from Ipswich’s JLA Sound and Light.

Families were able to spread out in the woodland, playground and patio areas and there were lots of craft activities to enjoy, including the opportunity to make bug boxes with volunteers from the Ipswich Wildlife Group.

In addition, they had the chance to decorate cardboard eco birds and journey sticks, featuring items collected while walking around the grounds.

Families also enjoyed spending time with Chris Draude, from Chrisalis Clowning, who used her performance skills to connect with young visitors.

Hailey said: “It was great to witness so many smiles and such fun and laughter.

“Families enjoyed some quality time together and most stayed from the start to the end, creating so many magical memories.

“The weather was perfect – cool and comfortable – and there was such a range of things for people to do, depending on their needs and interests.

“We’re so grateful to our colleagues and the amazing volunteers who pulled together and gave their time to make an event on this scale possible.

“It’s a showpiece day on our calendar and a great way for families to engage and connect.”

Pictures: Mila Sousa/EACH

Find our notes to editors here.

Keep in touch:

For further information about this release please contact:

Matt Plummer | Media and PR Manager | 07738 328058 | Matt.Plummer@each.org.uk

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