It started with a simple goal: become a healthier community. But for one Cambridge neighbourhood, the Heart of the Community project grew into so much more.
For three years, students at St. Benedict Catholic Secondary School in Cambridge have been hard at work, rallying support for a neighbourhood community hub well known as the “Heart of the Community”.
That effort didn’t go unnoticed. This year, the students received a $545,000 grant for the project from one of the top philanthropic organizations in Waterloo Region.
“The Lyle S. Hallman Foundations is truly interested in what is good for the community,” said Dan Witt, principal of St. Benedict. “This initiative is a great addition for the whole community. We are really trying to link the outside community to our school and it is working.”
St. Benedict led the first phase of the Heart of the Community project, which saw a scoreboard built and outdoor fitness equipment acquired for the hub. In the second phase St. Benedict assisted in conducting community consultations, which resulted in a new pavilion, landscaping and an outdoor basketball court.
The “Heart of the Community” is now in its third phase. The Hallman Foundation grant money acquired by the school will go toward a fully-accessible library and fitness centre for the community.
Set for completion in August 2018, it’s an accomplishment the students will be able to look back at with pride long after graduation, as community members use the facilities for years to come.
St. Benedict’s community partners include: Idea Exchange Clemens Mill and the Region of Waterloo Public Health and Emergency Services, among others.
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