Waterford High School English teacher Nathan Schreiber is duct-taped to the wall during the Tape a Teacher fundraiser to generate donations for an inclusive playground.

Events next week aim to boost donations for ‘all-abilities’ play area

The Waterford High School National Honor Society has more than halfway met its fundraising goal but still needs the community’s support to build an inclusive playground at Whitford Park.

The group has selected a design for its inclusive playground, which allows all children to play together regardless of their abilities. However, it still needs help with funding, said advisor Terry Rabe.

“This playground is so important because no matter the child’s ability he or she will be able to go to a state-of-the-art playground and play with others,” he said.

The Honor Society and the Best Buddy organization will host a week of inclusive activities from Monday through Friday to educate students and the community about the importance of inclusivity in everyday life and to continue to raise funds to build the playground.

Students will be able to enjoy games all students may play during their lunch period. The groups will also present information on the big screen in the lunch area and during homeroom that week.

Letters have been sent to area schools and businesses to join Waterford High School in a dress-down week. During the event – “A Casual and Comfy Week for an Inclusive Cause” – Waterford High School staff members will pay $10 each to be able to wear jeans for the week. All proceeds will go toward the Play it Forward playground building project.

A dinner and special needs Valentine’s Day dance will take place Feb. 16 at River City Lanes in Waterford. Advance tickets are $20, and kids 5 years old and younger are admitted free. Dinner will be served from 7 to 8 p.m. and includes pasta, choice of red or white sauce, meatballs, salad and garlic bread. The day of the event, the cost will be $25 for the dinner for adults. The special needs dance will cost $5 at the door and run from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

People who are unable to participle in either event but would still like to donate may contact Rabe at Waterford High School or put their donation in an envelope and send it to school with a check marked “all abilities playground.”

“If every family would donate $5, if every business would ask their employees to donate $5, if everyone would open up their hearts to this amazing fundraiser, the playground could be completed this summer,” Rabe said.