Refocusing efforts to replace playground at Hampden #55

As a new school year begins, the Friends of Hampden School #55 has some exciting updates to share.

Over the past 4 years, Friends of Hampden #55 has helped to fund a recess monitor, S.T.E.A.M. enrichment programming for students, and small grants for teachers at Hampden Elementary/Middle School. We’re thrilled to report that many of our previous funding priorities no longer require supplemental funding from the organization.

This year, we’re refocusing our priorities and tackling our biggest funding challenge yet: replacing the school’s aging playground.

Daily use of the playground by students and the community over the past 11 years has taken its toll on the existing equipment and play surface. It may not be apparent at first glance, but a growing list of health and safety concerns exists with the current playground, including:

  • Broken and missing pieces of the equipment that have resulted in several injuries to date
  • Standing water around and under the eroding play surface that presents potential health hazards such as mosquito larvae and bacteria growth
  • Equipment that does not serve the needs and diverse abilities of all Hampden #55 students

Preliminary plans for the new playground include:

  • State-of-the-art equipment, designed for 21st century play
  • Rubberized surface and drainage remediation
  • Inclusive design elements to serve all ages and abilities

Initial estimates for resurfacing the play area and replacing the equipment total approximately $170,000. Our organization is actively seeking private and corporate donors, as well as grant funds, for the project.

For more information and to donate, visit To get involved in fundraising efforts or to host an event to benefit the cause, please contact us at