2021 Empower Award

Dreamland Playground, Fairvale, NB

Concentra Empower

Bayview Credit Union is so honoured and thankful to have been awarded a $5,000 donation for the Dreamland Playground (Fairvale, New Brunswick) by Concentra Financial through their 2021 Empower Your Communities Initiative.

Below is the submission which won the $5,000 award for this great and ambitious project:

Through the school year Dreamland Playground is used daily by the students of Fairvale Elementary School. Designed and constructed by Playgrounds by Leathers in 1995, Dreamland playground is unique in that it is made primarily of wooden structures. Over the years, Dreamland has not only been loved by the students it serves, but also by children in many neighbouring communities. It is unlike any other school playground in the area – it is a sought-out outdoor recreation space to play for families from Sussex to Grand Bay-Westfield and beyond.

DreamlandUnfortunately, the aging infrastructure is in dire need of repair. The wooden posts are beginning to crack, and many children using the structures are getting splinters. The playground is inaccessible to students and children in the community with special needs who require mobility aids such as walkers and/or wheelchairs because of the rubber pellet surface. There is a ramp for children to use, but they are required to step up onto the ramp. Both the rubber pellet surface and ramp create a barrier to children with mobility aids from accessing and playing on the structure inclusively. 

While there are a number of playgrounds within the Greater Saint John Community, very few are barrier-free and truly inclusive to children of all abilities. Reconstructing Dreamland will fill this void within the community by creating a multi-generational outdoor recreation space which will encourage meaningful, unstructured play where all children can experience the benefits of physical, cognitive, social and emotional development. Creating a new barrier-free playground for kids of all abilities will lead to a true feeling of community.   

The impact on the community will be measured through witnessing children (and adults) of all abilities accessing and benefitting from the upgraded space and by hearing the stories within the school and community of how the reconstruction of Dreamland has positively impacted the lives of those who use the outdoor recreation space.

The funding from Concentra Empowering Your Community Campaign will play a big part in helping create a brand-new, inclusive, multigenerational outdoor recreation space for the students at Fairvale Elementary School as well as all of the children in our surrounding communities who regularly use the  playground on evenings, weekends, and throughout the summer months. Based on research and conversations with Playgrounds by Leathers, we have set a lofty fundraising goal of approximately $700,000.00. This funding will greatly impact the lives of hundreds of families from Hampton to Grand Bay – Westfield by helping to create an environment rich in physical literacy where kids of all abilities can socialize with their peers while doing their most important work – play!

Click here to see a list of all the Concentra Empower your Communities winners.