Hope Takes Root

The Pap Corps Champions for Cancer Research opens the Garden of Hope at Sylvester Deerfield

Garden of Hope
Susan Dinter and Stephen D. Nimer, M.D., celebrate the opening of the “Garden of Hope” at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Pap Corps campus in Deerfield Beach.

After breaking ground last year for the “Garden of Hope” at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Pap Corps campus in Deerfield Beach, The Pap Corps Champions for Cancer Research recently held a ribbon cutting to reveal the special area where cancer patients, staff and visitors can reflect and find peace.

Stephen D. Nimer, M.D., director of Sylvester, and Susan Dinter, chair of The Pap Corps, cut a purple ribbon as part of a celebration that included University of Miami Trustee Jayne Malfitano; W. Jarrard Goodwin, M.D., former director of Sylvester and Emeritus Professor of Otolaryngology at the Miller School of Medicine; David Lessen, M.D., medical director at Sylvester Deerfield Beach and Fort Lauderdale, and a champagne toast.

They were surrounded by many of the people whose dedication and generosity have allowed the garden to blossom into a quiet place for cancer patients, staff and visitors. The garden also helps raise funds for cancer research.

“On behalf of everyone at Sylvester, we are extraordinarily grateful to The Pap Corps for their continued support, as well as their dedication to Sylvester, to our mission and to our community,” said Dr. Nimer, who is also the Oscar de la Renta Endowed Chair in Cancer Research and professor of medicine, biochemistry, and molecular biology. “It is a great partnership that will endure forever, and the Garden of Hope will be here as a symbol of what we do together.”

A Historic $50 Million Pledge

All of the guests toasted to the fulfillment of a vision that dates back to 2016, when The Pap Corps made a historic pledge of $50 million to fund cancer research at Sylvester. As a result, Sylvester’s Deerfield Beach campus was named The Pap Corps Campus. Since its founding nearly 70 years ago, the nonprofit group has donated more than $110 million to Sylvester, which is the only NCI-designated cancer center in South Florida, and one of only two in the state.

Garden of Hope
The “Garden of Hope” at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Pap Corps campus in Deerfield Beach. Additional phases of the beautification project will include the “Path of Hope” and the “Lake of Hope.”

“Part of our partnership with Sylvester was the creation of a special place of peace and tranquility on the campus,” said Linda Moses, sitting past president of The Pap Corps. “That place, which was a vision of Beverly Berkowitz’s after she toured the brick garden at the Nashville Opera House in Tennessee, is now our Garden of Hope. Its serenity and beauty will inspire hope for the future.”

Visitors to the Garden of Hope can sit on benches as they listen to the calming effect of the water from the fountain and enjoy the lush landscape. They are surrounded by the inspirational messages on the bricks and plaques that donors have purchased to celebrate a survivor or commemorate the memory of a loved one.

“I can’t imagine anyone not being in awe of the beauty that has been created here,” Susan Dinter said. “It is a safe and serene environment that will provide hope for the patients being treated here and for the doctors and staff that work here. Both The Pap Corps and Sylvester have created a legacy that will be shared and enjoyed for many years to come.”

First of Three Planned Phases

The Garden of Hope is the first of three beautification phases planned for The Pap Corps campus. The “Lake of Hope” will be an area located behind the building, by the lake, and “Path of Hope” will be a walkway that leads from the Garden of Hope to the lake. Both projects will offer additional opportunities to purchase benches, plaques, inspirational pavers and other ways to continue providing funds for Sylvester’s researchers.

“The Garden of Hope speaks for exactly what the vision and now its creation stands for — hope,” said Beverly Berkowitz, The Pap Corps board of director’s officer at large. “The hope that every patient at Sylvester will live a long life as the next survivor. The fundraising opportunities at the Garden of Hope will live on, and we recognize that all supporters have contributed to a better future for people we know and people we will never know. But through our generosity, we made a difference symbolized by this small place of beauty — the Garden of Hope.”

For more information about purchasing a brick or plaque for the Garden of Hope, contact Sally Berenzweig, chief executive officer, at [email protected] or visit www.thepapcorps.org.

Tags: Dr. David Lessen, Dr. Stephen D. Nimer, Dr. W. Jarrard Goodwin, Garden of Hope, Jayne Sylvester Malfitano, Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, The Pap Corps Champions for Cancer Research