Christine Andreopoulos lost her son Kye during the pandemic due to a mental health challenge. In memory of her son, she worked with the City of Toronto in raising money for new Chess tables in Dovercourt Park. She asked Chess Institute to participate, in raising awareness on mental health issues, and promoting the strong positives that our Chess and life-skills based teaching brings i.e. focus, awareness of the future, dealing with issues. The surplus from the GoFundMe campaign for the tables was donated to Chess Institute by Christine.
Deputy Mayor Ana Bailao spoke at the dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony – she said the City was more than happy to support Christine’s efforts. Mental health challenges are extremely important, especially during these pandemic times. Ana said these tables would go a long way in promoting awareness and would like this effort to continue across the city.
The City did a great job of clearing the area and laying the pad for the tables. The tables come with plaques in memory of Kye and in support of mental health.
The Winick family also came out in support of the dedication, bringing one of the large chess sets we use at Chessfest and other events which had children in attendance captivated. Kye worked with Ted on teaching with Chess Institute – Christine said Chess was his greatest joy.
Olga Mushtaler of Chess in the Park Toronto stopped by during the dedication for a number of games. They will be adding Dovercourt to their regular rotation of chess tournaments and events. She believes by raising awareness in this manner, more people will regularly take up the game at park tables.
Deanna Anderson donated the two beautiful wooden chess sets that CIC provided for the event. These are in memory of her husband Michael Ellis.
CIC thanks everyone that attended this dedication, and making this a special event. We hope that our programs will continue help those who need it most.