Ella’s Playground gets $4,112.28 grant

Posted on November 17, 2017

It was a nice spring day - the kind kids anxiously await for after a long, cold winter spent cooped up in the house. Mother’s Day 2014.

Ella’s brother was one such kid excited to play in the sun, so grabbed his baseball bat and ran out to the yard to practice his swing. Unbeknownst to him, his then 6-year-old sister Ella followed him outside, right into the swing of his bat. The nice day wasn’t so nice anymore.

The fractured skull and the long road to recovery that resulted from the accident sparked a dream in Ella. A dream to have a playground where all kids are free to be kids, and to not have to sit on the sidelines because of a disability. 

In 2016 Ella’s dream became reality when her family partnered with the City of Marysville Recreation Dept. and other community donors to create an ADA accessible park known as Ella’s Playground.

Recently, the Community Foundation granted $4,112.28 from the Access to Recreation Fund to add on to that playground. The money will be used to build a sandbox with super scoopers.

Ella knows what it’s like to have to miss out on her favorite activities, like riding her bike and running around a park. Her injury affected her balance and sight, and taking the chance of her playing and falling on the hard equipment before the accessibility improvements wasn’t an option. She was lucky and made a full recovery, but knows not all kids are as lucky or are born with a permanent disability.

Her dedication to having a playground built in her community that every child could use led her to raise $10,000 in three months, which her family donated to the Marysville Recreation Dept. and led to the creation of Ella’s Playground. 

“It was important to us to give back to the community that supported us so much during and after her accident,” said Amanda Paterson, Ella’s mother. “From that day the support was overwhelming. The need is there and our community responded.”

The Community Foundation also recognizes this need and works to make recreation available to all through the Access to Recreation Fund. Since 2007, this fund has granted more than $220,000 to projects like ADA park improvements, a universally accessible treehouse and making the Citadel Stage theatre easier for everyone to enjoy.

 

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