TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) The Giving Tree at St. Luke's in Jerome is a work of art.
“They're in awe,” said Edna Pierson, Foundation Board member.
It can catch you by surprise.
“Really, because it is such a unique piece and that's what makes it so special for us,” said Pierson.
Back in the 1980's Hospital Foundation members wanted something that stood out.
“He says come look at it..” said Pierson.
So they enlisted the help of local artist Gary Flowers.
“He didn't realize that by putting mirrors behind it with the reflection it looks like a grove of four rather than one tree,” said Pierson.
The bark of the tree is made of resin and replicated after a real aspen log from the South Hills. But after a few years of wear and tear it needed some sprucing up.
“So many of the employees as they came by they went 'Oh, what are you doing, you're not taking the tree are you?' because just everybody just got so used to it,” said Pierson.
Dawn Soto is the executive director of the Foundation.
Her mom was a former employee of the hospital back when it was called St. Benedict's.
“To see her name up there is pretty inspiring. She's been gone now for a while so leaving a legacy it's kind of like remembering someone,” said Soto.
The Giving Tree survives off of donations that benefit further education, new services and equipment at their respective facilities.
“It stays right here in Jerome or Twin Falls and we use it exactly as they direct us to use it, 100 percent,” said Soto.
Without the Giving Tree and the supporting leaves, each painted by hand, many of the supplies and training wouldn't be possible.
“Our needs in Jerome are great and we just don't have all of the funding we need to bring everything the people of Jerome deserve to have here,” said Soto.