Oswegoland Park Foundation presents $25,000 check to park district to help local families in need

Prairie Point Center, Oswegoland Park District's administration office, Plainfield at Grove roads, Oswego

The Oswegoland Park Foundation (OPF) has, for the second time, completely funded the Oswegoland Park District’s Financial Assistance Program.

In a presentation to park district leadership on Oct. 27, OPF President Karen Kelly and board member Sudeb Chatt delivered a check for $25,000 to cover expenses for local families and individuals who rely on the program to cover the costs of Kids Connection, team and individual sports and other activities available through the Oswegoland Park District.

“As the fundraising arm of the park district, we are thrilled to support this important program again this year,” Kelly said in a news release. “I would be remiss if I didn’t thank our incredible community in the Oswegoland area who have and continue to contribute to our ‘Back to Basics’ campaign that funds programs like this one.”

The Oswegoland Park Foundation’s first $25,000 donation to the Financial Assistance Program happened in 2020, when so many families were returning to work but had little disposable income to pay for childcare while school was still remote. At the time, the donation was intended to help offload the costs of Kids Connection services, the all-day recreational childcare program offered by the park district.

Those funds lasted beyond the original need and helped even more families pay for classes and activities through 2021. That success inspired OPF to commit to funding the program moving forward.

“It’s a partnership like this that makes our community and our park district services stronger,” said Tom Betsinger, director of Recreation for the Oswegoland Park District. “We are incredibly grateful for the foundation and their work to support those who utilize our services.”

Aside from the “Back to Basics” fundraising campaign, the Oswegoland Park Foundation also raises funds to support golf-related programs offered by the park district through its annual Leon McNair Golf Classic, which honors one of Oswego’s most beloved former citizens and advocate for golf accessibility. Just this past September, OPF raised nearly $30,000 at the annual event.

To find out more about the Oswegoland Park Foundation and how you can support the “Back to Basics” campaign, visit oswegolandparkdistrict.org/get-involved/foundation/.