Jacksplace hosts festival for young adults

Group of young adults, family members, volunteers and staff outside in the Jacksplace garden at Jestival

Last weekend, we hosted a fun and vibrant festival for the young adults that use our hospice service, alongside their family and friends, called Jestival!

Jestival is an internal, annual festival held at Jacksplace. This year’s event featured live music from local musicians, stilt walker, Jonquil, canapes, lawn games, mocktails designed by the young adults, glitter face painting, festival crafts and lots of singing and dancing from the staff and attendees.

Group of staff members dressed in vibrant festival outfits with stilt walker stood next to colourful signs
Young woman in wheelchair smiling with glitter on her face and flowers in her hair, holding an inflatable blue dolphin
Vibrant colourful stilt walker stood with young man in wheelchair, smiling, with red hat on in decorated garden
Young man in wheelchair between two ladies all wearing big colourful sunglasses, smiling

Local bands, Firefly (from Winchester) and Fables (a duo from Southampton) volunteered their time to play at the festival and spent some time dancing and chatting with the young adults and staff. Naomi House & Jacksplace’s very own Chaplain, Rev. Nicky Smallwood, was a singer in the band, Firefly.

Fables duo - a woman singing into a microphone sat next to a man singing and playing guitar in a decorated marquee
Band members from Firefly - group of adults with instruments and a microphone in a decorated marquee, smiling

Play and Activities Team Leader, Claire Potterton, whose team organised the event, said:

There are so many festivals on at this time of year, so it felt like the perfect time for us to bring everyone together here for an extra special summer celebration for our young adults, in the comfort of the Jacksplace grounds.

Two ladies dancing and laughing in marquee

The local community and everyone at the hospices pulled out all the stops and created an authentic, vibrant, colourful festival, filled with love. Thanks to local musicians, our amazing catering team, external supporters, volunteers, staff at the hospice, and of course, the young adults, the day came together beautifully. We had beautiful sunshine, laughter, music, food, great company, and the conga! It truly was our own little fantastic Glastonbury in the garden!

— Claire Potterton, Play and Activities Team Leader , Naomi House & Jacksplace

Fables volunteered at the festival in 2023 and even extended their set this year, as everyone was having such a good time. Band members, Emily and Justin, said:

Jestival was amazing! We were lucky to get the warm, sunny version instead of a ‘bring your wellies’ kind of day. Add in the dancing and singing, and you can wrap Jestival up in one word – perfect!

Woman in sombrero and man in floral shirt from band, Fables, stood in front of colourful Jestival sign surrounded by balloons and decorations

The best part of any festival or gig is the people. We loved having a chat with the festival go-ers and it was wonderful to watch the staff, young people, and their families letting their hair down and having a great time.

— Emily and Justin, Fables

A huge thank you to Jude's Ice Cream for donating ice cream and to The Boaz Project for donating the hay bales.

Jestival Gallery of Photos

Check out more photos from the day. A huge thank you to our volunteer photographer, Jon Bolton, for snapping such fantastic images.

Young man in wheelchair wearing big green sunglasses sat between mum and dad wearing funny props
Young adult in wheelchair dancing with two ladies wearing brightly coloured outfits in decorated marquee
Vibrant colourful stilt walker holding umbrella stood between two young adults in wheelchairs in decorated sunny garden
Two ladies smiling behind bar at Jestival with drinks and bar apparatus on table in front of them
Young woman in decorated sunglasses sat between two ladies in decorated marquee
Woman with arm around young man in orange top in wheelchair with breathing mask on
Three ladies sat on straw bales holding up ice creams and smiling, in vibrant festival outfits
Stilt walker dressed in pink orange and red stood with two ladies and a young woman in a wheelchair
Staff members sat with young woman in a wheelchair, all colourfully dressed, smiling
Staff members and volunteers crowded round young man in wheelchair smiling with hands in air
Naomi House and Jacksplace cook wearing flowers in hair and colourful apron holding trays of ice cream pots in front of decorated marquee
Father and son smiling with thumbs up, wearing hats and sunglasses outside in a garden
Colourfully dressed stilt walker pointing to multicoloured Jestival sign on top of archway in sunny decorated garden
Young woman in wheelchair wearing pink t-shirt and straw hat looking at Naomi House carer, wearing orange cat ears and dungarees, smiling

Be a part of Jestival

Experience Jestival for yourself and watch this short highlights film.