Swedish brings communities together

August 22, 2011 Sherry Williams

What do you call an event where a healthcare institution, a university and over 20 construction and engineering companies to provide much needed improvements to a local preschool building? We call it: Together We Can: Head Start Makeover. On July 16th, Swedish, Seattle University and members from the WA State Society for Healthcare Engineering WSSHE; American Society for Healthcare Engineering (ASHE), McKinstry Construction, GLY Construction, Coffman Engineers Inc., Graham Construction and G&W Commercial Flooring and others came together to provide a much needed extreme makeover to the Yesler Terrace Head Start Pre-K school building. Swedish’s commitment to community benefit and engagement took the lead to bring about this service project to make a direct impact on the community we serve.

The in-kind donations of materials, labor, and equipment along with $70,000 raised by the local construction and engineering industry and concerned community members put this unique community project was on tract to succeed. The Head Start Pre-K school building has two classrooms for 20 smart and energetic 4 and 5 yr old students and four teachers who needed a place to inspire learning for Yesler Terrace families. The building was dark, cold at times and the kitchen floor and playground was in bad shape. In seven hours with 150 volunteers the pre-k school building was transformed into a place of pride and fun with:


  • A fresh coat of paint,
  • Energy efficient lighting in the classrooms and hallways
  • New playground and play equipment
  • New kitchen counters and dishwashers
  • Newly serviced furnace
  • New landscaping with native plants, shrubs and flowers
  • New utility room for arts and crafts

The Yesler Terrace resident’s provided a helping hand, working on the projects along side many of the construction workers and engineers. This is a great way to bring everyone together in support of community growth, communication and working together for the children of Yesler Terrace Head Start P-K school.

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