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JMG “Adrian’s Swing” Community Fundraiser

posted May 11, 2018, 8:20 AM by Floyd Wygant   [ updated Jun 13, 2018, 8:32 AM ]


JMG begins “Adrian’s Swing” Fundraiser

Nora Greene   

Do you remember going to the playground as a little kid? I can remember how the monkey bars seemed so tall I was scared to fall; how the slide always filled my stomach with giggles. I remember swinging so high it felt like I maybe, one day, I could let go and fly. I was lucky enough to be able to run around in the freedom of my imagination, letting the obstacles take me wherever my heart wanted. I was lucky enough, but not all of us are.

    Adrian Mazerolle, a 6 year old Waterville local and George J. Mitchell Student, loves to swing. He has been living with a neurological condition, called Schizencephaly, which has made him visually impaired, unable to walk without aid, and susceptible to epileptic seizures. But, like any other kid, Adrian has grown, and no longer fits it in the North Street Playground baby swing.

Unfortunately, buying a specialized swing is not a cheap ordeal, so JMG teamed up with  Waterville Parks and Recreation to help budget the cost of equipment for Aidan and other kids with conditions like him. In such a short amount of time, the $1000 goal was met! JMG was able to present the check to Matt Skehan, Parks and Recreation Director, as well as Aidan and his mother, Sybil Mazerolle. The swing will be installed on Friday, June 1st, along side JMG students and administrators.     

    Skehan remarked that he was “so impressed by how quickly the students raised the money for the swing”, and plans to fund the purchase of a second swing to be installed at the Moor Street Park.



JMG Kicks Off “Adrian’s Swing” Community Fundraiser

JMG students at Waterville Senior High School kicked off a $1,000 fundraiser to purchase a handicap accessible swing for the Judge Morton A. Brody Playground on North Street.

The fundraiser "Adrian's Swing" is named after Adrian Mazerolle, a sweet 6-year-old kindergartener from the George J. Mitchell School who loves to swing, but recently outgrew the baby swings and needs a specialized swing installed. Adrian was born with a neurological condition known as Schizencephaly due to having a stroke in utero. He is visually impaired, not able to walk without a walker, is non-verbal, and has intractable epilepsy.

“Adrian has an infectious laugh and smile, works hard every day at school, and really enjoys his play time--especially when he gets to swing at the local playground!” said Adrian’s mother, Sybil Mazerolle. “We just don’t want him to lose the ability to swing next to his friends, but he will be unable to this summer without a new swing.”

Matt Skehan, the Director of Waterville’s Parks and Recreation Department, researched the costs of installing a handicap swing for older children after being approached by Adrian’s family. He said due to budget constraints, he was unable to afford the swing immediately.

“Unfortunately, the price tag was too substantial for the current budget, but we are excited that JMG is taking this project on,” Skehan said. “It’s really a perfect location for the new swing and will be used by many families for years to come, I’m sure.”

After hearing Adrian’s story from their JMG Specialist, students in the multi-year JMG program jumped into action and planned a gofundme page, a school-wide fundraiser announcement, and brainstormed several small events such as a car wash, movie night, squirt gun battle, and bake sale to raise funds.

“In JMG, we teach students to overcome their barriers in life and give back to their community. This story really called to them on both levels,” said Dana Bushee, JMG Specialist at WSHS. “The students decided this was a barrier that they could beat for this little boy and others like him. I’m really proud of them!”

The school-wide fundraiser will kick off May 10th (Thursday) at the high school in a community homeroom event, said WSHS senior Sage Hafenecker, President of the JMG Career Association.

“I can’t imagine going to the park as a child, and not being able to swing,” Hafenecker said. “In Adrian’s honor, we are asking our school community for help to raise $1,000 so that all children can swing this summer!”

The North Street playground is the most popular playground in Waterville due to its proximity to the Alfond Youth Center and the neighboring soccer fields, trails, and public pool, which serves thousands of families all over Central Maine, Skehan said. Currently, there is not a handicap accessible swing at any of the city’s playgrounds.

The gofundme page is located at: https://www.gofundme.com/adrianswing

JMG (jmg.org) partners with public education and private businesses to offer results-driven solutions to ensure all Maine students graduate, attain post-secondary credentials, and pursue meaningful careers.