Everyday Heroes: Dream playground

Kids enjoy the tire swing at the new playground at The Salvation Army Gresham Corps.

GRESHAM, Ore. – Hundreds of volunteers came together on Saturday to build a playground for The Salvation Army Gresham Corps.

The build was organized by KaBOOM!, a nonprofit that had built thousands of play areas for kids across the country.

“A lot of kids are addicted to technology and they’re getting sedentary and we want to get them outside and get them moving,” Project Manager Courtny Dolan said.

Many of the volunteers came from Foresters Financial, a service partner with KaBOOM!

Others came from across the metro to put the playground together.

“We’re actually helping improving places like this that was actually nothing at one point,” volunteer Tyler Phillips said.

Captain Dianne Madsen with The Salvation Army said the playground area used to be a field filled with sticks and rocks.

“Really it’s a huge improvement just to have a place for kids to come and play,” Madsen said.

“To let kids have a place where they can be kids is such a beautiful thing and such a rare thing in our society,” Madsen added.

The playground is open to the public, but will most frequently be used by kids attending The Salvation Army’s day camps and after-school programs.

“If we didn’t have this, we would just be inside playing with all the electronics which is not really good for you,” Carla Diaz, 11, said.

Diaz has been coming to The Salvation Army’s summer day camps since she was in kindergarten.

“[The playground] is fun because we get more active,” Diaz said. “Anybody watching who donated this, just thank you very much for helping us build this.”

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