|Planet Creature is a small planet just to the left of Pluto. It cannot be seen with standard telescopes on account of the user's "blind spot". It is best seen with a kaleidoscope.|
Planet Creature, on which all creatures (particularly cats) live together in harmony, was first described by an Irish Australian girl named Maeve Coughlan. Documentation of flora, fauna, alphabet, language, architecture, and creed can be found in a series of notebooks and loose paper which she dedicated to this task between her 8th and 11th years. Her parallel universe was shared to varying degrees by a number of her friends.
When Maeve died suddenly in a traffic accident, this world emerged more fully for her family and friends, and gave them some consolation in their grief. Because it had been such a large part of Maeve's psychological world, it seemed somehow 'natural' to imagine her living on in Planet Creature 'doing good deeds and getting up to mischief', now that her time on Earth was over.
In real life, Maeve was reputed to have run a hospital for terminally ill ants in a corner of the school playground. After her death, her mother Robyn Brady imagined her joining a Flying Cat Ambulance Brigade on Planet Creature. Maeve's friends were invited to continue to gather at the Quaker Forest in Kelvin Grove to play, and to take part in a number of creative activities. exploring issues of grief and loss in a creative way, and integrating the life and death of their friend into their ongoing lives in a healthy way.
Recognising that aspects of this model could be used in other situations of children's grief, the Planet Creature/Maeve website began as both a specific goodbye site for those who knew Maeve, and as a template/ ideas site for other communities of grieving children.
This concept received seed funding from the Australian Film Commission, and was partnered by Toadshow, who donated their Toadal Control software to underpin the website template. The children met monthly in the Forest as the Bumbletown Council, and contributed their ideas and enthusiasm to the website and the Flying Cat Ambulance Brigade stories. This process has been documented in the Big Island Pictures documentary called After Maeve, directed by Jan Cattoni and funded by SBS Australia and RTE in Ireland.
The website is currently owned and maintained by Planet Creature Pty Ltd.
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