Playground GC Huston
Our 85th Anniversary Signature Project - Building on our past for a better future..!
Playground Project – GC Public School, Southampton – Everyone Can Play!
September 13th, 2023
At a landmark signing ceremony this morning at GC Huston Public School, President Dave Bertrand and School Principal Hugh Morrison signed a Memorandum of Understanding to embark on an ambitious project to build an inclusive school playground that will benefit all students, regardless of their abilities.
The estimated cost of this project is approximately $115,000, and the school already has funds in reserve of around $30,000, which they will pledge to help make this playground a reality. With Rotary’s participation, we have an opportunity to bridge the remaining $85,000 shortfall together. 
The target is to raise all the funds by Spring of 2024 to enable the School Board to tender and install the play equipment, ready for the new school year in the Fall of 2024.
To see how you may help, scroll down the page.
UPDATE: December 12th, 2023
Two major donations help us reach our initial goal early...! we do not disappoint other potential donors we are leaving the fundraiser open until the New Year so we can make the playground bigger and better than the initial design with a stretch target of $120,000. This coupled with the $30,000 the School has in reserves will mean we can build a $150,000 playground.

Southampton Rotary, in collaboration with GC Huston, is thrilled to announce a major milestone: a
major donation of $20,000 from Tuggy’s Gas & Variety has propelled us to reach our initial $85,000 goal. This
follows a generous $10,000 donation last week from Roote’s Gas Bar and Top Shelf. Achieving this
remarkable feat in less than three months since the launch of our fundraising campaign (MOU Signed on
Sept 13th) speaks to the incredible support from across our community.

Thank you to each supporter who has contributed to this success. From the inception of the project, we
committed that any funds surpassing our initial goal would be dedicated to providing youth-related
initiatives at GC Huston such as further enhancements to the playground project.

While celebrating this achievement, our fundraiser remains open, presenting an ongoing opportunity to
enhance the proposed playground with additional features and accessibility. The continued support of
our community ensures that we not only meet our target but also create an even more inclusive and
vibrant space.
Unfortunately, school playgrounds rely on community support, as they're not funded by the School Board. The School Board will contract and oversee the construction but will not start this process until ALL the funds have been received and deposited with the School Board.
Join us NOW as a proud sponsor of this accessible playground project. Your generous contribution will play a pivotal role in creating a playground where every child, irrespective of their physical abilities, can revel in the joy of play on an equal footing. A detailed case for support is available for download below.
Together, we have the opportunity to make a difference and create a model of accessibility and inclusion that resonates throughout our community. Your contribution, whether financial or in-kind, will create a lasting legacy, shaping a brighter future for generations to come. 
Contact Tony at 519 797 3151 or email to find out how you may help make a difference.
Sponsorship levels and benefits
Level 1 (Donation: $10,000 +)
- All benefits of level 2 Sponsorship plus
- Prominent logo placement on promotional materials, including invitations and tickets.
- Exclusive recognition as a presenting sponsor at the official opening
- Customized sponsorship package based on the sponsor's preferences
Level 2 (Donation: $5,000 to $9,999)
- Donor wall acknowledgement
- Logo placement on promotional materials and website.
- Special mention in press releases and media coverage.
Level 3 (Donation: $2,500 to $4,999)
- Donor wall acknowledgement
- Logo placement on promotional materials and website.
- Special mention in press releases and media coverage.
Level 4 (Donation: ($1000 to $2499)
- Donor wall acknowledgement
- Logo placement on promotional materials and website.
Level 5 (Donation: ($500 to $999)
- Donor wall acknowledgement.
Level 6 (Donation: ($250 to $499)
- Donor wall acknowledgement.
Level 7 (Donation: ($100 to $250)
- Donor wall acknowledgement.
  • You may also donate directly to us via e-transfer using
  • or send a cheque payable to "Southampton Rotary Club" and annotated.
Please annotate the donation "GC Huston Playground".
For personal donations, in excess of $25, Tax receipts will be provided.
Background brief from Hugh Morrison, Principal GC Huston Public School - September 13th, 2023
We believe that we have a special school.  Like most schools, we work hard on traditional classroom subjects making sure our students can read, write, do math, and solve problems that are relevant in the world. Currently, we have 370 students and we are seeing consistent growth every year.  What makes our school unique, however, is that 45% of our school population join us from Saugeen First Nation giving us a moral imperative to live in reconciliation and to teach students to live together embracing diversity.    We learn together, laugh together, love each other, and drive change in our community. 
Returning from Covid we have noticed an important connection between physical activity, time outside, and positive mental health.  While much of the learning that happens in a school is planned and intentional, some key learning happens when students are active and engage in play together.  Often the first step to friendship is a simple smile when children play together.  A challenge to these special moments is that our playground has become dilapidated. Much of our playground equipment has been removed as it is too old and unsafe. 
The school board is doing some renovations to our building to make it more accessible. They cannot cover the costs of new playground equipment.  In the summer of 2024, they will be installing an elevator and refreshing the tarmac on our playground.  This seems like the opportune time to coordinate the installation of a new playground structure.
The staff, students, and families that make up our school are proud of the relationship that we enjoy with the Southampton Rotary Club.  For years the Rotary Club has strengthened the community we live in with several projects, many of which feature the school.  We are proud to announce that the school and Southampton Rotary Club are partnering to raise funds for the purchase and installation of a new playground structure.  We have set aside some money for the project but still have a significant way to go as we are estimating the need at approximately $85,000.  We want to install an accessible structure that reflects our emphasis on inclusion and activity.  Learning to play together is a key aspect of what reconciliation should look like daily!
We know the deep care that the communities of Saugeen First Nation and Southampton have for our school. With the support and partnership of the Rotary Club, we believe we can create an area that will be enjoyed by families for years to come. Everyone can play! Everyone can be Friends!
Here's a selection of supporting comments received via Social Media immediately after the launch ceremony on Wednesday morning September 13th, 2023:
Diane Huber
Thank you Southampton Rotary Club for inviting me to be part of this incredible announcement this morning. This will be an amazing addition to the GC Huston campus as well as an additional resource for teachers to utilize in teaching and absolutely so much fun for all the Hawks. I have scars on a knee and an elbow representing my own fun, and not-so-fun, playground experiences at this school - The signing ceremony this morning brought me close to tears as being there reminded me of all the years I was there as a student and also of all the great ways that this Rotary Club contributed to my own life as a kid growing up in Southampton. We are so lucky this Club has been here for 85 years and that they continue to invest significantly in the kids families and spaces within our community.
My children were Hawk's and my granddaughter is now a Hawk, What an awesome announcement today!! Thank you Rotary and everyone involved.
Martha Bennett
Wendy Huys
Great news!

Wow! So amazing! This is one reason why I love this town and its incredible volunteers.

Joscelyne Atchison

Great for the children and everyone involved. Thanks to the Rotary Club!         
A wonderful undertaking- continues the long-standing relationship with GC HUSTON - BEST-JHC
John Cherrie
A wonderful addition to the GC Houston playground. A big thank you to all of our Rotary Group members.
Well done!