PEACE Park fund receives $50K matching gift
The Fund for the Future of Heights Libraries (FFHL) has received a $50,000 matching gift from an anonymous donor to help fund the Coventry PEACE Park renovation.
“This anonymous gift will help us make the park as welcoming as possible for all community members,” said Nancy Levin, Heights Libraries director. “The gift comes at the perfect time as we prepare to break ground this fall.”
Last month, the Cleveland Heights Planning Commission approved the PEACE Park renovation plans, and the library aims to remove the current playground this fall. Site grading will begin shortly after that to prepare for new playground equipment, storybook loop installation, and tree planting in spring 2024. The hope is to re-open the park in June 2024.
“The anonymous matching gift is significant because it will allow community members to double their contributions," explained Levin. "The need for new playground equipment and accessible park features is urgent since the current structure has reached the end of its lifespan.
"Donations of any amount will help the FFHL reach our $1.2 million goal. This project is much more than replacing a 30-year-old playground. The PEACE Park is a space for connection, community action, learning, and play. It is an extension of the library, and we aim to provide free programs and services for the community through a commitment to maintaining a safe, welcoming outdoor space.”
The project's goals are threefold:
Programming and Partnerships - Develop ongoing programming in the park that provides community members of all races, abilities, ages, and socioeconomic statuses with educational opportunities to enhance literacy, physical health, and environmental stewardship.
Environment - Create and maintain as many native plant habitats as possible where mowing and traditional landscaping practices are unnecessary. Expand and maintain the tree canopy.
Workforce Development - Support workforce development opportunities through training and residency opportunities in the PEACE Park.
“Thirty years ago, the Cleveland Heights community came together to build a playground for the Coventry school," said Erick Kauffman, FFHL board member. "Today, we ask the community to come together to reimagine this green space that has become such an important community-building space for people of all ages."
For PEACE Park updates, or to contribute to this matching gift, visit bit.ly/FFHLPeacePark, e-mail Kaela Sweeney at email@example.com, or call 216-932-3600 ext. 1290.
Jackie Nachman is president of the FFHL board of directors.