Jessica and Paul Fournier of Burlington and their two young boys, both with special needs, are enjoying a beautiful new yard that now provides easy access to and from their home.
The $10,000 landscape is courtesy of Gelderman Landscape Services' Share the Care contest. We began the contest in 2015 as part of our 60th anniversary celebration.
Over 60 nominations were received this year, but it was the Fournier’s situation that swayed our judges. Eight-year-old Thomas has a rare condition called Dravet Syndrome, which causes seizures, developmental delays and limited mobility. Three-year-old Cameron has Down Syndrome and requires oxygen and a feeding tube.
“Since both of our children have special needs and require one-to-one support at all times, we don’t have the opportunity to do basic gardening or cutting grass,” said Paul. “We are so grateful for our winning.”
“We’ve always been part of the community, whether that’s in our offices in Mississauga, Waterdown, Guelph or Kitchener,” says Gelderman’s vice-president of landscape and design Chris Mace. “We thought as a nice gesture to give back to the community, we would give away a free landscape through our Share the Care contest.”
Leah Noordhof, who nominated the Fournier family, said she felt they could really benefit from a beautiful new outdoor space. "This family has had numerous challenges in their lives over the past eight years. They truly deserve to have a new, safe, low maintenance yard to play with their children," said Noordhof.
The landscape project includes a walkway to allow wheelchair access to the front door from the driveway, cleanup, seeding and new plant materials.
"The goal was to make the property more esthetically pleasing, but also functional for the Fourniers," added Mace. "Presenting the family with a refreshing new look will enhance their lives and allow the kids to play outside. We just wanted to give them something that they don’t have time to do, or is not even in their focus because their focus is on the children and taking care of them.”
“This means low maintenance, beautiful scenery and a safe place for our children to play. After the makeover, we will enjoy a beautiful yard that does not require so much gardening maintenance,” said Paul. “Knowing the gardening has been taken care of, we won’t have to worry so much about the ‘wild’ look we had acquired.”
See before, during & after pictures of the makeover here.
Want to know more? You can find details of our 2015 winner here!