At the Hopeful Horizons’ office on Charles St. in Beaufort, our lobby is the first room that you walk into upon entering the building. This room serves as a waiting room for children and teens who are here for a forensic interview or therapy appointment, and for adults receiving counseling or legal services. As a previous educator for Kentucky schools, I know that kids need to be entertained and occupied when they must wait for long periods of time so one of my goals when I came to Hopeful Horizons was to update our lobby!
Before the remodel, our lobby had an “under the sea” and “fairytale” theme that was looking a little dated. We chose to remove the built-in bookshelves that spanned one entire wall and repaint the walls with an off-white, cream tone. This not only made the space look cleaner, but it also brightened up the room and made it look larger. The TV was mounted to the wall and an open bookshelf was installed to hold toys and books.
After the TV was mounted and the shelf was installed, I put out new toys, new books, fresh coloring books and more art supplies that the kids could play with or use on the new whiteboard. Additionally, we replaced metal chairs for more comfortable chairs and comfy bean bags. The carpet was updated to a soft cream and blue design. Finally, encouraging and inspiring decals were placed on the walls, and I am still searching for the best art piece to put above the desk area.
Before & After
These renovations may seem small, but to the children and teens who come to Hopeful Horizons, these changes really do make a difference. Hopeful Horizons feels that kids should be able to feel heard and comfortable in all spaces, but especially in our lobby. The work that our therapists and forensic interviewers do is intense and emotional, therefore our lobby should promote safety, inclusiveness and comfort to our clients.
We are grateful to the Junior Service League of Beaufort for the grant that funded our lobby renovations. Thank you, JSLB!
Samuel Bullock is a lobby advocate for Hopeful Horizons, working primarily in the Charles St. office in Beaufort. He is currently working on his master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling. Though originally from Kentucky, he has lived in Beaufort a little over a year.