VIDEO: HSAwareness Volunteers at Chicago Commons to Renovate the Playground at Paulo Freire Family Center

Last week, a group of HSAwareness volunteers returned to Chicago Commons’ Paulo Freire Family Center (PFC) in Chicago’s Back of the Yards neighborhood to help restore the nature playground for the children participating in the facility’s daycare and after school programs. Last year, team members assisted the 120-year-old organization by refinishing logs to be used as benches and stools, planting flowers, and spreading woodchips throughout the play area. This year, the team was tasked with refreshing what was done last year, by varnishing toy chests and benches, spreading fresh mulch and woodchips, and planting more flowers throughout the play area.

Over the course of the winter, as described by PFC facility coordinator, Nilda Varguez, the harsh weather takes a considerable toll on the playground. Every year, the HSAwareness team looks forward to revitalizing the park and preparing it for the seasons to come, led by HSA CEO and Chicago Commons board member, Bob Smietana, and HSA SVP, Josephine Thomas-Hoytt. Our volunteers, pictured below, hope that the children at Paulo Freire Family Center enjoy their new park, and we look forward to assisting with similar projects in the future.

Left to right (top): Sean Flanagan, Bob Smietana, Chris Dubose, Brenton Schrader, Eric Woods, Jason Klein, and Jesus (Tito) Martinez. Left to right (bottom): Wanda Melendez, Olivia Wirth, Alina Zaj, Josephine Thomas-Hoytt, and Nilda Varguez.

Left to right (top): Sean Flanagan, Bob Smietana, Chris Dubose, Brenton Schrader, Eric Woods, Jason Klein, and Jesus (Tito) Martinez. Left to right (bottom): Wanda Melendez, Olivia Wirth, Alina Zaj, Josephine Thomas-Hoytt, and Nilda Varguez.