After four months of online voting and message forums, the 11 winners of the Aviva Community Fund competition were announced on Tuesday.
Rossland had given heavy support to a Neighbourhoods of Learning (NOL) Centre and, from thousands of ideas, it had emerged as one of 30 finalists competing for portions of the $1 million fund.
Unfortunately, the NOL Centre did not make the final cut.
Ami Haworth, the NOL coordinator, was nevertheless very positive. “It’s unfortunate that we weren’t chosen,” she said, “but we need to take the momentum that was created during the competition and use that to move this project forward in other ways.”
Eleven winners were chosen, two in the large category ($100,000 – $500,000), four in the medium category ($25,000 – $100,000) and five in the small category (up to $25,000).
Playgrounds won big, including two small prizes for a primary school in Tillsonburg, Ont. and an elementary school in Rexton, N.B., two medium prizes for playgrounds at an elementary school playground in Vancouver and a special education centre in Ottawa, and one large prize for a playground at Essex Public School in Ontario.
In the medium category in which the NOL Centre was competing, awards were also given for a therapeutic garden for Alzheimers patients in Cleveland, Que., and to Dreamcoat Fantasy Theatre, a community theatre group in North Bay, Ont..
The other large prize was given to build an SPCA animal shelter in Yellowknife, N.W.T.
Small prizes were also awarded to the Hearth Place Cancer Support Centre in Oshawa, Ont., a hockey team in Kanata, Ont., that gives kids with intellectual and physical disabilities a chance to play, and a support center for women and children in Ottawa.
For more information, visit www.avivacommunityfund.org.
Moving forward with their plans, the NOL committee plans to hold a community meeting to present the proposal of two scenarios that they sent to School District No. 20.
The meeting will include presentations from successful K-12 schools and will be held on March 3 at 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the RSS gym.