I’m thankful for Lakewood Connects because I believe in a Lakewood that’s a great place for all kids to grow up from Colfax to Green Mountain. There are significant needs and challenges facing our Lakewood kids, for example almost 1/4 are on free and reduced lunch and kids makeup the largest community served by the Action Center. Lakewood Connects helps bridge the gap, so that all kids can get a fair shot in Lakewood.
The Lakewood Connects organization, led by Reg Cox, made it possible for our school (Foothills Elementary) to create partnerships with community businesses, faith-based coalitions, realtors, government officials, radio stations, and other service organizations to establish a shared vision for improving our schools’ presence, service and functionality within the community. Rising crime rates and unkept building sites and playgrounds were eye sores and became targets for crime in the community. Through this partnership, we were able to collaboratively work with GOCO (Great Outdoors Colorado Organization) to design, raise money, and secure grants for the construction of a half-million dollar field and playground reconstruction—providing needed resources to school children and community members alike. Additionally, this project brought community members together around a purpose and created a renewed sense of togetherness. As a result, Foothills Elementary became a hub in the community – fostering tutoring opportunities for disadvantaged students, and providing for community needs through various programs and social events, as well as sustaining an exceptional education opportunity for all children. There is no monetary value that I can place on a partnership of this type – I am just thankful that were fortunate enough to be a part of such a positive movement.