Skateboards and scooters donated to West Flat students

Left to right: Malcolm Jenkins, Ward 1 Coun. Charlene Miller, Westview School principal Cheryl Arcand, Donny Parenteau, Queen Mary School principal Kari Korscak and St. Michael School principal Darren McDougall are pictured with some of the donated skateboards and scooters at Alfred’s Skatepark at Parkland Hall on August 30, 2019 (Peter Lozinski/Daily Herald)

Earlier this year the West Flat got a skateboard park.

Now, kids in that neighbourhood have some equipment to go with it.

Friday morning, Malcolm Jenkins and Canadian Tire announced a donation of 150 skateboards of various sizes and 75 scooters, to be split evenly amongst three west flat schools.

Each school will receive 50 skateboards and 25 scooters to distribute to kids in need.

Malcolm was helped out by passionate West Flat advocate Donny Parenteau, as well as Ward 1 Coun. Charlene Miller.

The donation has a value of about $6,000.

“West Flat is very deep in my heart,” Parenteau said. “I was born and raised here. It’s nice Malcolm was able to do this. It’s good to see underprivileged kids get a chance to use something and do something we used to use so freely when we were kids. That’s what Parkland is about. Parkland is about community.”

Three school principals were on hand to accept the donations. Cheryl Arcand from Westview School was joined by Darren McDougall of St. Michael School and Kari Korczak of Queen Mary.

“Our kiddos will be using these when we come back to school,” Arcand said.

‘We’ll be sharing the good news and also be using them for class incentives and for connecting with our community. It’s all about engaging our community members.”

Arcand said the donation means kids will have another opportunity for physical activity, and the means to just come over and be a part of the skate park.

Korczak agreed.

“It’s bringing recreational opportunities to the West Flat areas for our kids here in their neighbourhood,” she said.

That’s part of the reason Jenkins donated. He said the West Flat is sometimes left out and has traditionally been the last in line.

“It’s an equality thing,” he said.

“When we built the other skate park, kids from here have to change buses or cycle to exhaustion to get up there, or get mom and dad to drive them if it’s possible,” he said.

“It wasn’t a big hoopla for them to get a new skate park. ‘P.A. has a skate park but I never get to use it. Now they can’t say it anymore.”

Jenkins also noticed that kids were flocking to the new basketball courts and playground, but fewer were taking advantage of the skate park.

“I’d drive by here and see a dozen kids and thought ‘why isn’t this buy?’” Jenkins said.

“it occurred to me, what if they don’t have a skateboard? A lot of kids don’t. We thought, ‘let’s get some skateboards and get them out into the community.’”

 McDougall spoke about how important Malcolm’s donation is to the school communities.

“I’m taken aback again by Malcolm and his generosity,” he said.

“It’s unbelievable what he does for the community. I’m amazed.”