Brick fundraiser will help build new Boys and Girls Club facility
By Lisa DeNeal Post-Tribune correspondent July 26, 2013 11:30AM
An artist's rendering of the Tolleston Project in Gary. The old school will become a Boys & Girls Club and community center. | Post-Tribune file photo
To donate to the John Will Anderson Boys and Girls Club and Community Center Tolleston Project’s “Buy-a-Brick” Program, go online to begreatnwi.org/bricks. You can also place your order with cash, check or credit card by visiting Boys and Girls Clubs of Northwest Indiana, 839 Broadway, Gary, or by mail with an enclosed check made payable to Boys and Girls Clubs of NWI, 839 Broadway, 3rd Floor, Gary, IN, 46402, Memo: Bricks of JWA. For questions or more information, contact Robert Montgomery, 881-1060, Ext. 406 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or Chareice White, 977-7924 or email@example.com.
Updated: August 2, 2013 8:39AM
The Boys and Girls Clubs of Northwest Indiana revived its Buy-A-Brick Program at a fundraising event July 15 at Miller Bakery Café for the Tolleston Project, which is renovating the former Tolleston Middle School, 2700 W. 19th Ave., into the new John Will Anderson Boys and Girls Club and Community Center.
The Tolleston Project kicked off in March 2012 with a fundraising goal of $5 million. They are now $79,703 shy of the goal with a target opening of the club set for October.
Titled “Not Just Another Brick in the Wall,” guests were informed about the Buy-A-Brick program, which allows people to purchase engraved donor bricks for the JWA Boys and Girls Club walkway.
“The bricks are $100 each and the donors can have their names and a short message engraved on the bricks,” said Majestic Star Casino government, community and public relations director Chareice White. White is one of the chairpersons for the Buy-A-Brick program.
Donald Babcock, director of economic development for NIPSCO, said more than 200 bricks have been purchased and more are available.
“We want to go over the brick walls with donors,” he said.
At the fundraiser, $4,100 in brick purchases was made when Babcock and Cal Bellamy of Krieg DeVault’s Financial Institutions did a friendly competition matching 10 brick purchases with 10.
Carol Thompson of Merrillville grew up in Gary in the Tolleston neighborhood. She bought a brick in honor of her late parents, Robert and Pauline Williams.
“They lived in the Tolleston neighborhood 50 years. I think it is great that Tolleston Middle School will be used in a way that will benefit the neighborhood and the city,” she said.
JWA Boys and Girls Club director Rosemarie Joiner said she’s been a part of the Boys and Girls Club since childhood.
“I remember as a child, looking in the director’s office and saying I was going to be a director,” she said.
Boys and Girls Clubs of Northwest Indiana interim director Michael Baird said the Tolleston Project is an exciting opportunity for kids to have a chance to develop their skills and talents.