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Valley Park Go Green Cricket Field Gets Another Boost In Support

Kiwanis Club of East York makes financial contribution

Kiwanis Club of East York current past-president George Rowell, centre, presents Valley Park Go Green Cricket Field committee co-chairs Lisa Grogran-Green, left, and Nick Stefanoff with a cheque recently in support of the project being built at Valley Park Middle School. - Photo/COURTESY

The Valley Park Go Green Cricket Field received another boost of support last week.

The Kiwanis Club of East York (KCEY) came out as an early supporter of the project at Valley Park Middle School in Thorncliffe Park, but last week it backed up that endorsement with a financial contribution.

"It's fantastic. It was really personally touching that the members would dip into their pockets like that," said Lisa Grogan-Green, co-chairperson of the project committee.

At the Jan. 17 meeting, KCEY's current past president, George Rowell presented Grogan-Green and Nick Stefanoff, fellow co-chairperson and principal of the school, with a cheque for $12,880.

That amount consisted of individual member contributions together with a matching donation from past president Mary Ellen Trimble. The co-chairs were also presented with a second cheque from the club itself for $4,000.

While the money will help the project reach its fundraising goal of $1.7 million (of which it has raised $1 million), it's the club's belief in the project that is most valuable to the committee.

"What they've done for us is huge, not only have they come forward with a financial contribution, but they came out really early as a supporter and that helped with other donors," Grogan-Green said.

The club's current president, Ross Hillis, said while the club already had a presence in the Flemingdon Park and Thorncliffe Park neighbourhoods through the key club at Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute, they wanted to have a greater presence in those communities.

Don Valley West Councillor John Parker told Hillis about the Go Green project and he thought it was a good fit for the club.

"We latched onto the Go Green project as something special," Hillis said.

The project would transform the school yard from the small play place it is today with a concrete basketball court, 11 portables, and a small field used for soccer and other sports, to an oasis with a butterfly meadow, an outdoor amphitheatre, herb and vegetable garden, interpretive marsh, and facilities to play cricket, soccer, baseball and basketball.

The KCEY is also planning a fund raiser in the spring where it would go into a local shopping centre and use a kilometre of double sided sticky tape to collect donations of loonies and toonies. When the Kiwanis Club of Barbados did the fund raiser it raised more than $50,000.

The Go Green committee also has hundreds of thousands of dollars in outstanding grant applications it's waiting to hear back about and it's competing to receive a grant from Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment (MLSE) Team Up Foundation Fund. The new fund provides grants totalling $200,000 to Ontario charities for sports and recreation programming or facilities. The grant will be decided on by voting at

Voting opens Monday, Jan. 30 and runs until Feb. 20 to determine the top 20; then a committee will determine the top 10, which will be revealed for another round of public voting in March to determine the four recipients.


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