Foresters and community partners volunteer to build new Halifax playground

    Providing more than 7,500 children a safe accessible environment for 15

    HALIFAX, June 17 /CNW/ - Ecole John W. MacLeod Fleming Tower School in
Purcell's Cove, a suburb of Halifax, has a brand new playground today thanks
to a coordinated effort of 275 volunteers from Foresters(TM) and the community
who erected the facility. Designed so children with special needs can play
alongside their peers, this unique playground will serve the Halifax districts
of Purcell's Cove - Armdale and Spryfield - Herring Cove. Halifax Mayor Peter
Kelly joined George Mohacsi, President and CEO, Foresters, in acknowledging
the tremendous contribution made by all the volunteers.
    "This playground build is an excellent example of Foresters mission
coming to life by providing a place where children and their parents can spend
quality time together playing, learning and having fun," said George Mohacsi,
President and CEO, Foresters. "Foresters champions the well-being of families
by investing in the communities where our members live and providing
opportunities for our members to make a difference."
    Foresters, a member-based life insurance provider with members throughout
Nova Scotia, funded and organized the playground build with KaBOOM!, local
parents and the Halifax Regional Municipality.
    "We are pleased that volunteer organizations such as Foresters and
KaBOOM! take an active role in our community and are willing to invest in
infrastructure that will improve the quality of life for the children in HRM."
said Mayor Kelly.
    Before the first hole was dug in the ground, students at Ecole John W.
MacLeod Fleming Tower School helped design the playground of their dreams.
Elements of the children's designs, including its accessibility features for
children with special needs, were included in the plan for the new playground.
    "This has been such an exciting project for the school to participate in.
Our students took real ownership when designing the playground and they're
thrilled to see it become a reality," said Lynn Douglas, Principal, Ecole John
W. MacLeod Fleming Tower School. "I'd like to thank Foresters, KaBOOM! the
students, parents, staff, fundraising partners and the hundreds of volunteers
that made today possible."
    The new playground will be nearly 3,000 square feet in size and includes
a rocky ridge climber, spiral climber, arch swing set, adventure tube, spiral
ladder, a slither slide and much more. With a duration expectancy range from
15 to 20 years, the playground has the capacity to serve approximately 7,500
children in its lifetime.
    Foresters investment in this playground extends beyond the work completed
on build day. Foresters volunteers and the school community have made a
commitment to maintain the playground to ensure it is available for subsequent
generations of parents and children.

    About Ecole John W. MacLeod Fleming Tower School

    Ecole John W. MacLeod-Fleming Tower is an elementary school with two
sites and about 330 students in English and French Immersion programs from
Primary to Grade 6. Students attend many different after-school programs
including music, dance, science and sports. The school is open every night for
youth and adult athletic programs. Community involvement is very strong with
many young families choosing the neighbourhood because of the reputation of
the school and the friendliness of the neighbouring community. The new
playground at the John W. MacLeod site will provide an interactive, safe and
accessible play space not only for the students at the school but also for
about 500 children and their families who access community recreation
facilities in Districts 17 and 18 of HRM.

    About KaBOOM!

    KaBOOM! is a national non-profit organization that envisions a great
place to play within walking distance of every child in America. Since 1995,
KaBOOM! has used its innovative community-build model to bring together
business and community interests to construct more than 1,500 new playgrounds,
skateparks, sports fields and ice rinks across North America. KaBOOM! also
offers a variety of resources, including an online community, regional and
national trainings, grants, publications and the KaBOOM! National Campaign for
Play, which includes Playful City USA and the Playmaker Network - a national
network of individual advocates for play. Headquartered in Washington, DC,
KaBOOM! also has offices in Chicago, IL and San Mateo, CA. For more
information, visit

    About Foresters

    Founded in 1874 as a fraternal benefit society, Foresters(TM) champions
the well-being of families through quality life insurance, unique member
benefits and inspiring community activities. Foresters shares its financial
strength with more than 650,000 members in the United States, Canada and the
United Kingdom. Unity Life of Canada, a wholly owned subsidiary of Foresters,
represents Foresters in Canada. Foresters is celebrating its 135th anniversary
in 2009. For more information, please visit

    Foresters(TM) is a trademark of The Independent Order of Foresters, a
    fraternal benefit society, Toronto, Canada M3C 1T9.

    (*) Unity Life of Canada, a Foresters company, is a wholly owned
    subsidiary of The Independent Order of Foresters.

For further information:

For further information: Jeannie Tsang, Kieran Lawler, Media Profile,
(416) 821-9315, (416) 303-0799,,

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