Harbin Hero Highlight: The Sweet Cocoon

During Marlowe Treglown’s last days, her mother, Amanda Bohannon wrote her a short poem inspired by a comforting notion.

Marlowe was wheelchair-bound and had lost many of her abilities, and Amanda said she imagined her daughter was safe and snug in a cocoon that shielded her from the rest of the world.

“The little poem I made for her was ‘You are a precious caterpillar wrapped in a sweet cocoon; You’ll emerge a beautiful butterfly in heaven way too soon.’”

After Marlowe passed away at age 18 from her life-long, terminal illness, Amanda couldn’t get the phrase “Sweet Cocoon” out of her mind. Then the idea struck her one day that she was supposed to build a house... but not just any house.

“I believe God wants me to build a retreat called The Sweet Cocoon for families with sick, disabled or terminally ill children,” said Amanda. “It’s a place where they can go and spend time together away from the stressors of life.”

Where Families Can Retreat

The Sweet Cocoon is one of five non-profits competing for votes to win the Harbin Hero Challenge. The winner of the Challenge will take home a total of $1,500 from Harbin Clinic to further their charity’s goals.

Amanda and her family have already raised the necessary funds to purchase 20 acres of land on which the retreat home will sit. Now she’s trying to raise the money to build the home and its amenities.

“We already have the plans drawn up for it; it’s a large log cabin, and there will be a barn with animals, kind of like a petting zoo area for the kids. And we’re going to have handicap-accessible walking trails so the kids can be out in nature.”

Amanda says when families come and stay in the home, the parents will have the opportunity to venture into town for a date night while their kids are taken care of back at The Sweet Cocoon by a team of nurses. Also, outings and activities will be planned for siblings of the sick children.

“A lot of times, siblings can feel overlooked because the parents have to put so much focus on their sick child, so we’ll plan fun stuff to do with the other kids,” Amanda said.

When asked what The Sweet Cocoon’s super power would be, Amanda said, “We’d have amazing healing powers to keep these kids from getting sick in the first place, but if they were sick, we’d make their time on earth the best it could be in The Sweet Cocoon.”

Voting Details

To vote for The Sweet Cocoon for the Harbin Hero Challenge, select them as your charity of choice on the online race registration form at rfpra.com/hero.

Race-day registrants will be able to select The Sweet Cocoon on their registration forms, and costume contest winners may select them at the race for additional points.

The five Harbin Hero Challenge charities are The Sweet Cocoon, The YMCA of Rome, Floyd County CASA, Summit Quest and Living Proof Recovery. Each charity will receive $500 from Harbin Clinic and the organization with the most votes will receive an additional $1,000.