MEDIA DISTRICT NORTH -- Children at the Boys & Girls Club were in for
a shock Monday afternoon when they came to the club to do their homework.
Gone were the mismatched bookshelves, frayed posters and cramped desks
in the club's homework room.
Over the weekend, volunteers from IKEA worked to give the room a
snazzy makeover, complete with fresh light-blue paint, new bookshelves,
chairs and desks, framed posters and magazine organizers.
"It just looks fantastic," Alex Fey, the club's executive director
said. "I was just in shock when I saw the finished product."
Twenty volunteers, all employees of IKEA, donated approximately 14
hours Saturday and Sunday to help transform the room.
IKEA donated the $4,000 worth of materials to revitalize the
400-square-foot room. Chrissie Pierce, public relations coordinator at
IKEA,learned of the club's need for a remodel through a community
The redesign will nearly double the number of students who can use the
room from 16 to 30.
Small, cramped desks have made way for large, lightweight tables that
can be easily moved and will allow for cooperative learning.
"The desks for the computers are so pretty," said Joanna Lebrun, 12.
"There's just something to it -- the room looks so pretty. It was a total
shock when I saw it."
Lisa Deaz, 8, agreed.
"I went into the room and was like 'Whoa!' " Lisa said.
Peggy Kovacic, an interior designer at IKEA who helped plan the room,
said the finished product was "amazing." But what she looked forward to
most was seeing the responses of the children who would use the room.
"Just seeing their faces, their reactions, that will make it," Kovacic
"It's not the same room that it was," said Fey. "Now it's the way it
should be. Everything is perfect, right down to the clock on the wall.'