School raises about one million dollars in first phase of campaign
Holland Marsh District Christian School (HMDCS) is working towards a new facility to accommodate the future needs of the school, including projected growth. The first phase of the capital campaign for the new facility has brought in close to one million dollars, according to principal Rod Berg.
The school has made good use of its current facility, which was constructed in the 1950s. Additions were made to the original building in later years, the last in the early 1980s.
Now HMDCS is looking to ensure it is prepared for the future, says Berg.
“We’re thinking long-term,” he says. “The phrase we’ve been using in our capital campaign is ‘education for the next 65 years.’”
HMDCS, which has the distinction of being the first Christian school established through the Ontario Alliance of Christian Schools (OACS), celebrated its 65th anniversary this year.
Harry Weening, chairman of the school board, says the current facility is “tired.” The board and membership believe construction of new facilities will best meet future requirements, he says, noting that education today has different infrastructure requirements than it did years ago.
“Facilities are integral component to the delivery of quality, Christ-centred education,” he adds.
The new building will accommodate projected growth as the region, including north Bradford and Newmarket, is seeing a population increase.
Various features of the facility, such as larger classrooms, a larger gymnasium and kitchen facilities, will allow the school to offer enhanced programs and support community events like Grandparents’ Day and fundraisers. It will also replace the school’s current use of several temporary buildings.
Several years ago the school purchased a 15-acre lot, which is in a more central location between Bradford and Newmarket.
The first phase of the capital campaign, themed Growing our Future Child by Child, kicked off about a year and a half ago.
The school is now launching the second phase of the campaign, expected to continue over two or three years, towards covering the remaining costs of the new elementary school.
Berg notes that the school membership is in full favour of the project, evidenced by recent membership votes which were more than 90 per cent in favour.
The school is soliciting financial support from each of its member families
“The goal in our campaign is to honour every member of our membership in our society with a visit and to present them with the challenge of growing our future child by child in education for the next 65 years,” he says.
The campaign will also reach out to the broader community, including grandparents, and is looking to recruit corporate sponsors.
The HMDCS student body includes representation from 33 churches in the area. The school has maintained a student population of about 250 for the past several years.
To learn more about HMDCS visit www.hmdcs.ca.