Brenner Children’s Hospital, part of Wake Forest Baptist Health, just completed construction of a new dedicated space within the hospital for music therapy called “Sophie’s Place.” These music rooms offer healing therapy to young people suffering from pain, chronic illness, and serious injury.
Brenner Children’s is the fifth Sophie’s Place location in the country and the only one located in the Southeast.
Sophie’s Place is named in honor of Sophie Rose Barton, a young singer-songwriter and musician. She was well known to volunteer her time at Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah. When Sophie passed away unexpectedly at the age of 17, her parents wanted to create a place that celebrated Sophie’s love for music and her desire to help others. Sophie’s Place was born to carry on her legacy and love of music.
The space welcomes patients as they enter and they can strum on a guitar or play the drums that are easily available at arm’s reach along the walls. With comfortable couches and carpeted floor, it is a welcoming environment. The space also includes a music lab to record and edit music made by patients as well as a stage for professional musicians to perform and bring their music to the children. For young songwriters, it’s an opportunity to create and record their own music. A music therapist can assist children to experience music in the ways most comfortable to them.
Sophie’s Place was made possible through a network of friends who stretch from High Point to Salt Lake City, including Sophie’s parents, Kent and Anne-Marie Barton, Hall of Fame quarterback Steve Young’s Foundation, Forever Young Foundation and Jason and Jeff Harris, owners of Furnitureland South in High Point, as well as a legion of donors across North Carolina who gave because it was important to have this addition at Brenner Children’s.
Alisa Starbuck, DNP, President of Brenner Children’s Hospital said Sophie’s Place is a significant addition to the Brenner Children’s experience. “We are very grateful to our generous donors and our community who have made this project possible and available to all children who are hospitalized at Brenner Children’s. Having Sophie’s Place in Brenner will provide an environment that will help children to manage their stress, express their feelings and promote healing.”
Based on restrictions still in place due to COVID-19, Sophie’s Place will open later this year when guidelines allow. We look forward to the day when this room is filled with music and laughter from the children.