Decatur Adventist Junior Academy (DAJA) has been in existence for over 21 years. It provides quality Christian Education in a safe and nurturing environment. Students are guided to enter into an abiding relationship with Christ and are educated to become successful citizens in our society.
Over the years, DAJA has had several areas where our students could have recess. However, there has not been a well-constructed play area designated for its students. Jasmine Johnson noticed this right away upon her arrival as the new principal and made it her focused goal to ensure students had a playground to play on.
“All I Want For Christmas Is A Playground” was the last major fundraiser the students of Decatur Junior Academy implemented during school year 2018-2019. Students from grade 5 – 8 created a video and solicited help from friends and family to donate through a 6-week Fund Me Campaign. The Campaign yielded over $4,000 at completion. In conjunction with the Fund Me Campaign, several other donors contributed to the initiative. Donors included the Southern Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, the South Atlantic Conference of Seventh-day Adventist, donors from different countries, and many states across the United States. One donor gave $10,000. We also had a long-standing Box Top Campaign which added to the pot, and by the end of the school year, we had raised the amount needed for the $23,000 playground.
Construction of the playground started the end of August 2019 when the existing swings were dismantled. The old play area was cleared and leveled to begin the new build. In the weeks that followed, the new playground began to take shape as the crew worked tirelessly. On October 1, 2019, our students played on the completed playground for the first time.
The reality of our new playground is a perfect example of what a village can do when we all work together and do our part.