Diana Gilbert, Silver Creek Elementary School PAC president, in front of the playground at the school. The PAC has been leading an effort to rebuild the playground, a $115,000 project that is nearing its funding goal. Emelie Peacock/Hope Standard

Hope Lions Club challenges other organizations to give generously

The donations matching challenge is an effort to get the Silver Creek playground built

The Hope Lions Club wants to see shovels in the ground on the new Silver Creek playground and they are putting their money where their mouth is.

The club has donated $1,000 to the Silver Creek Elementary Parental Advisory Committee (PAC). The idea is to turn this $1,000 into $5,000 with the help of the community.

Shannon Jones, marketing and communications executive director of the club, said they will match this amount if they see three community organizations step up with $1,000 each.

“We want to try to do it as a team effort throughout the community of service groups, to help Silver Creek get their playground going and get them digging as soon as possible,” she said.

PAC president Diana Gilbert said the playground is now only short $22,000 of the total $115,000 goal, and they are moving ahead with securing a builder for the summer.

Gilbert said the school is very much the hub of the Silver Creek community. With housing developments going up all around the school, the playground will serve as a central gathering place for the growing community. The Hope Lions Club agrees.

“We really like to spread the donations throughout the community and we think it’s really important that Silver Creek gets this new playground,” Jones said. “This is not just the elementary playground, but it’s also the community playground for Silver Creek.”

Both Jones and Gilbert agree it’s a long overdue project.

“We have to get this going, because it’s been years in the making,” Gilbert said, adding all the donors also want to see movement on the project.

“I know, kids who go there now, their parents played on the exact same playground,” Jones said. “It’s in need of an update, for sure.”

The fundraising challenge is the latest in a long series of donors to the project. Most recently Valley Helicopters gave $5,000 and the Hope Ratepayers donated proceeds from the second annual Lego Expo, totalling $1,800 and change.

Non-profit or service groups interested in taking up the Hope Lions Club challenge can do so through the club or through the Silver Creek PAC.

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