Staff of The Home Depot's Cleveland store location recently donated materials for and volunteered to build a greenhouse at a local school. Dr. Heather Hayes, principal of Waterville Community …
Staff of The Home Depot's Cleveland store location recently donated materials for and volunteered to build a greenhouse at a local school.
Dr. Heather Hayes, principal of Waterville Community Elementary, contacted the store to see about possibly buying a greenhouse for the school’s students to use. To her surprise, they offered her a free one.
“They said they would love to furnish the greenhouse for us,” Hayes said. “We really appreciate their generosity.”
Volunteers from The Home Depot recently visited Waterville to deliver materials for the greenhouse and build it the same day. It is now located behind the school, near its playground and walking trail.
Several Waterville students got an early chance to learn about the greenhouse and helped put it together. The Home Depot volunteers taught them how to accomplish tasks such as assembling shelves and attaching the greenhouse cover with zip ties.
“I was excited when I found out,” said fourth-grader McKayla Bormann. “I don’t think many students have been in a greenhouse before.”
The new greenhouse will be accessible to students both when their classes visit it and when they are on recess. Hayes explained all teachers will have the option to use the greenhouse for class lessons.
The decision to get a greenhouse came from Waterville educators' desire to offer more hands-on activities to students. All public schools in Tennessee adopted new academic standards for science this school year, and Hayes noted the greenhouse can be used for lessons at each grade level.
Fourth-grader Tucker Ivey said he is “pretty excited” about the new greenhouse, because he enjoys working with plants in the garden. He expects other students will learn to love it as well.
“Once they really see what’s going to happen in there, they will be really excited,” Hayes said. “It’s something they can keep up with all year.”
Courtney Webb of The Home Depot said the local store’s employees have volunteered their time to address several needs in the community, such as building a gazebo at a local veterans’ cemetery.
Webb said any organization wishing for help to tackle a similar project is invited to contact her or Derrick Swafford at the Cleveland Home Depot at 423-728-7602.
“Home Depot likes to help the community, and we are glad to give back,” staff member Doug Fowler said. "This is all about giving back to the community.”
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