VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. -- For a local five-year-old girl, a new playground is going to make playtime not only fun but easier for her. A Virginia Beach girl was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in November of 2020, which then made it hard for her to enjoy going to playgrounds.
“One of the things that definitely come to an end when you have cancer is playtime with friends and she's the only child,” the girl's mother told News 3. “We're kind of limited on what we can do, she hasn't been able to go to any parks and she really loves to swing."
The family asked News 3 not to be identified.
Her mother said the diagnosis hit her and her husband hard, but they said they have hope.
"She had symptoms leading up so, you know, we were just grateful to know what was going on with her,” the mother said.
That is why on Saturday, the Roc Solid Foundation – a local nonprofit -- was at their home to build the girl a playground. The foundation builds playgrounds for children with cancer across the region.
"Children in their battle with pediatric cancers sometimes lose that ability to play,” Sam Hill, a volunteer with the Roc Solid Foundation, said. “Instead of going out to playgrounds with friends, they're doing clinic visits, so this gives them a return to childhood."
The nonprofit also had some help thanks to the We-Promise Foundation.
"It's so important to give back to the community and nothing is better bringing joy, hope, and smiles,” Karen Lane, Executive Director of the We-Promise Foundations said.
The volunteers gave their best efforts in the sweltering heat that was present on Saturday. They pushed through to make sure she had her personal playground.
They arrived and worked through the morning assembling parts and putting them together until noon when the big reveal happened.
When the playground was revealed, the local girl and two of her friends started playing on it climbing the hand steps, sliding down the slide, and playing on the swings.
"Every day is precious. We don't take things for granted anymore,” the girl's father, said. “We just want to show her that every day there's laughter, there's joy, there's nothing too difficult to overcome."