AAUW Oct 19 2016 General Meeting

October 2, 2016 by
Filed under: general meeting 
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2016, 7:00 PM

Program:  From Gravel to Green – The Vision of a Healing Garden

Danna Olsen, Master of Public Health and ecologist, is passionate about the need and value of therapeutic green spaces for improving population well-being.  Danna has seven years experience caring for neuroscience inpatients, employment which coordinated with her return to graduate school to pursue a master’s degree in public health with a focus on environmental health.


Danna proposed the idea for a rooftop healing garden to UW Madison Hospital’s Health and Healing Committee in 2011.  With the committee’s enthusiastic support she presented her vision to the CEO and facilities staff.  The garden became her capstone project in earning her master’s degree.  Danna provided the evidence base that guided the design and funding efforts and worked closely with the facility planner to obtain patient, family and staff input.


The garden was completed and celebrated with an open house this past July.  As hospitals strive to become more holistic in their approach to achieving higher levels of patient-centered care, gardens are becoming popular as a way to improve the hospital experience and patient outcomes.

Danna spends a great deal of her free time as an advocate for sustainable and healthy practices/policies and educational outreach with environmental nonprofits.  In addition to the UW Health and Healing Committee, she serves on the UW Health Environmental Sustainability Committee, is a board member of the Healthy Lawn Team, and a Steering Committee Member of the Wisconsin Environmental Health Network.  She is also very involved with building and sustaining local Community gardens and has served four years on the Madison Committee on Community Gardens.

Please join us to learn more about Danna’s five-year dedicated journey to change a gravel rooftop into the spectacular Hillary Grace Healing Garden.

Maryette Braithwaite and Diane Hellie, Program Co-chairs


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