UNCW Nursing Students Donate a Weekend and $12,900 to Build Relaxation Space for Boys and Girls Homes

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The children of the North Carolina Boys and Girls Homes at Lake Waccamaw will have a new place to relax this spring thanks to the University of North Carolina Wilmington nursing students. They will build an outdoor patio and deck area Saturday, March 31 beginning at 8 a.m. and will work until the project is complete.

Instead of leaving a legacy on their own turf, the UNCW School of Nursing Class of May 2012 decided to use money collected for their class gift to give back to the children of Lake Waccamaw with a $12,900 donation of time and materials. The project was initiated by the nursing students after they visited the Boys and Girls Homes of Lake Waccamaw as part of their community health nursing course. The UNCW American Assembly for Men in Nursing (AAMN) is partnering with the Class of May 2012 and helped raise funds for the project.

Student William Hite, project organizer and president of the UNCW AAMN, said, "The children asked for an outdoor space they could use to eat, visit or simply relax, and we saw a real opportunity to make a difference for this community.  Studies show that the health of children correlates with time spent outdoors."

More than 25 nursing students will build the patio and deck area from the ground up, including patio furniture, umbrellas, outdoor rugs and more. With the help of the homes' residents, the nursing students will leave their mark by painting a large, colorful emblem on the deck. Children of the Boys and Girls Homes provided feedback on the design of the space and will craft a corn hole game set on the day of construction as part of their woodshop class.

Ashli Gibson, president of the School of Nursing Class of May 2012, said, "We hope that the recreation area will support the physical and emotional well-being of the children and provide a healthy foundation to carry them into adulthood."

Building materials and furnishings were donated by Oldcastle, Lowe's Home Improvement, Leisure World of Wilmington, Quikrete, Ruth Arnold Graphics and Signs, O'Leary's Automotive Repair, Speed King Manufacturing of Oak Island, and Mike Hill and Family.

Hite said, "We are grateful that these sponsors have donated to this project during such hard economic times. Their generosity will improve the lives of this vulnerable population and will pay dividends for years to come."

Media are advised to join the construction activities in the morning for the best visual opportunities.

Media Contacts:
Joy Davis, Marketing and Communications, 910.632.3903 or davisjc@uncw.edu