Esplanade House Playground Gazebo

Area of Focus: Maternal & Child Health

Lead Club Name: Chico Sunrise

Lead Rotarian: Ochsner, Carl R.

Year: 2022-23

Project Budget: $12,000.00

DDF Grant Amount: $6,656.00

Our Rotary club will expand an existing patio slab and add a covered gazebo with electrical/lighting and little free library at the Esplanade House (EHouse), a non-profit agency in Chico. Under the auspices of the Community Action Agency of Butte County, the EHouse offers homeless families with children a safe place to live and intensive services that address the root causes of homelessness. Those causes often include, but are not confined to, heavy drug and alcohol use. The Esplanade House provides professional service plans designed for each unique situation; plans that feature structure, guidance and accountability. At any given time, there may be 100 children living in the EHouse complex along with 70 adults. Graduates of this program are fully prepared to participate in the community in healthy and productive ways, due to the program’s focus on maintaining sobriety, learning ways to manage difficult emotions, and acquiring essential problem-solving skills. The Esplanade House is, in reality, a large, converted apartment complex where distraught and drug-damaged families can rehabilitate while becoming reconnected. Children who have been in foster care are very often re-united with now-sober parents at EHouse, and the playground area at the center of the complex provides the setting for these often-awkward reunions. By constructing a large 20′ X 12′ covered patio area, Sunrise Rotary will enable parents (often mothers) to re-connect with their children via picnics, table games, and barbecues, in a non-threatening environment. The little free library will encourage and facilitate parents and little ones reading books together as a way to restore the bonds between them.

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