The Long Path Ahead
Although time sometimes seems to stand still, progress moves forward on the Toms River Field of Dreams project. As time goes on, we are hoping to see this amazing dream become reality. Not only will this complex provide a place for individuals to feel welcomed and have fun, but it will also be a place for those with disabilities to learn and grow into all around healthy individuals.
The Coronavirus pandemic has affected everybody in the state, the country, and the world, in some way. Some have not been able to see family or friends. Others had their workplace routine disrupted and have been working from home. The normality of summer fun was not a reality this summer. Everybody is still being encouraged to stay distant from one another, to not go out to restaurants, not use playgrounds, keep distance from others at the beach or when outside hiking, fishing, etc. Only recently have we seen the shift back to a slight sense of normal. Group sports are slowly being allowed to resume. Schools will likely be reopening with restrictions. Those who had been working from home may be allowed to go back to the office. Everybody has been affected, and we are hopeful for better days ahead. With teamwork, we can make this happen. With teamwork, we can also make the Toms River Field of Dreams a success.
The organizer of this project, Christian Kane, has recently participated in a podcast which outlines the progress made on this to date as well as what can be expected in coming months. Back in May, we were able to find out that the first phase among three of making this dream turn reality had been completed. This phase entailed clearing and grading of the land. The second phase was set to begin just as this pandemic was declared, and involves setting the gas lines, power lines, and foundation in place. This should take approximately 6-8 weeks and should be completed before October. The third phase involves construction of the recreational areas within this Field of Dreams. After the third phase is accomplished around October/November, the construction of his inspiring complex will be complete and it will soon be ready for individuals with disabilities of all ages and developments to enjoy.
The Ocean County Health Department could not be more excited to partner with this wonderful cause to help deliver educational programming, screening services, and assist with a community garden in order to take part in the development of a healthier community. Just as others surely are, we are simply waiting for this complex to be fully constructed so that we can reach out to this community and help them become healthier versions of themselves in all ways possible.
About the Grantee
In partnership with our community, we are committed to serving as a leader to promote healthy lifestyles, ensure a clean and safe environment, and provide high-quality public health services to protect our present and future generations.