The plan is to build this summer.
The West Sechelt Playground Enhancement Committee (WSPEC) has now raised $90,000 of the $100,000 needed for new playground equipment and rubberized ground cover at West Sechelt Elementary School.
The goal is within reach this year, thanks to some generous support from local businesses at the end of 2013.
A business donation challenge launched in October by SUNCO Building Materials prompted several businesses to step up with matching $1,000 contributions as well as one $9,000 contribution from an off-Coast charitable foundation.
"We were overwhelmed at the support of local businesses like the Sunshine Coast Credit Union, C-Me Pedestrian Reflectors, The Coast Group and Fortis B.C. and floored when we found out the Baris Foundation wanted to give us $9,000," said chair Sue Shinn.
The WSPEC plans to add on to the existing playground at the school with some new accessible playground equipment and add a rubberized ground cover to make the space useable by children of all abilities.
The ground cover alone will cost about $60,000.
Members of the WSPEC have been fundraising for nearly three years and Shinn said the group is excited to see a light at the end of the tunnel.
"We're almost there. We just need a little more funding and then some donated labour and materials and by the end of this summer kids will have a new, accessible place to play in West Sechelt," Shinn said.
Once the $100,000 fundraising target is met, another $25,000 of donated time and materials will be needed to install the equipment and connect the playground to the school with a cement walkway.
"We had commitments from businesses three years ago to do the work, but it's taken much longer to get the funds together than we ever imagined, so now we're looking to firm up those commitments and see if any other businesses on the Coast would be willing to get involved," Shinn said. "We expect to have a massive thank you board erected at the playground once we finally finish this project because there are so many people who have stepped up to make this park possible. It's going to happen in 2014."
Find out more about the playground at www.westsecheltplayground.com or follow them on Facebook. You can contact Shinn at 604-885-9391.
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