The generosity of Chicago Blackhawks defenceman Duncan Keith has made a new outdoor court at the OSNS Child and Youth Development Centre a reality.
The play court is the first project donated by Keith in his ongoing partnership to the OSNS. Created in 2011, Keith Relief is dedicated to alleviating the financial and emotional burdens of families and individuals dealing with medical crisis.
“Learning new skills is easier in an engaging play area. We are so appreciative of Duncan Keith for this healthy donation to our centre,” said Manisha Willms, executive director of the OSNS.
Designed with safety in mind, the outdoor court surface is made from a mix of new and recycled rubber tire material that is porous and requires very little maintenance. The new surface provides better grip and is resilient, minimizing the impact of tumbles. The wide-open space offers improved accessibility and will be used by children of all ages and developmental levels at the centre.
The play court has elements that provide a space for learning. As well, OSNS said the various elevations, paths and bridge will help build strength, balance and co-ordination. It is the first of several projects Keith has committed to in a three-year funding agreement with the centre.
“It’s a pretty special opportunity and I feel it’s a huge honour to be able to be involved with the OSNS,” Keith previously told the Penticton Western News. “It’s about the kids, it’s about getting them the help and the guidance, all about the tools and the programming that they need to succeed in life.
The donation will come in two facets. Each year will see dedicated funds going to families in financial crisis in the care of their children and annually there will be the start of an outdoor project to enhance the facility to maximize support for kids.
The spring of 2018 will see the beginning of the Duncan Keith Adventure Playground on the upper portion of the centre grounds