My name is Thérèse Ladouceur from the Park Safety Committee at Bellevue Manor on Caldwell Avenue. I am writing this letter because I hope that the Summit could be helpful in helping me encourage participation in the community.
In 1996, the community built two parks that were named: “Pleasure Park and Fun Park”. This project happened because a group of concerned tenants got together and planned all aspects of the project. That and the help of many donations of funds made our dream come true.
Now, 5 years later, we have repainted and are in the process of fixing the play structures so that they continue to be safe for our kids. I also have some good news, in the fact that, after a long wait we will finally be getting some benches built in the park situated on Caldwell Ave. We are hoping that these benches will serve as barriers that will stop young children from running into traffic. This has been a concern for this committee for many years now. We are also hoping that they will encourage parents to come and supervise their children in the park and also permit them to socialize with other adults.
Even with these benches we are still in need of more sitting areas, especially in the smaller “Fun Park” built in the back of the two high rises. What we were thinking of was getting some picnic tables set up so that parents can sit or have a picnic with their children. It is very hard for parents to go to the parks when there is nowhere to sit. They either go for a very short time or they end up leaving the community to go to other parks that are equipped with benches.
Here are some of the other needs that have been mentioned to me:
There is a need for more volunteers to monitor the parks especially between 3:30 and 8:00 p.m. The monitors are the eyes and ears of the committee. They are asked to report problems including damage to the play structures to either security, the police, housing or just to the committee depending on the problem.
We need more community participation to our Park Safety Committee meetings. These meetings take place once a month, usually on the first Thursday of the month, between 6:30 and 8:00 p.m. at the Bellevue Community Centre, 1475 Caldwell Ave. We do provide child care and snacks to those who come to the meetings. All that they need is to have an interest in keeping our parks safe for our kids.
We need volunteers to come out once in a while to rake and clean up the parks.
It would be very much appreciated if people could donate picnic tables to the committee. If transportation is a problem I am certain that we can make arrangements for pick up.
I wish to thank all the past and present volunteers and wish to thank in advance anyone who can help us with any of the above.
Park Safety Co-ordinator.