Volunteers pitch in to build Oakland school's playground

OAKLAND, Calif. (KTVU) -- When a brand new charter elementary school opened in East Oakland a few weeks ago, something was missing: a decent playground.

But more than a hundred volunteers are taking care of that problem.

One volunteer who KTVU spoke with doesn't have a child at the school, but they heard about the project and wanted to pitch in.

"Actually do something to contribute to the community where we live. Give back," said Heela Gonen.

The school in need has an unusual name. It's called the roses in concrete community school. It sits on an old school site.

The kindergarten through fourth grade children will get to climb on the new play structures, grow flowers and vegetables in planter boxes and perform on an outdoor stage.

There are even maps of the United States and the world painted on the pavement. Teachers say they're moved by the response.

"I'm from LA. Coming to Oakland you hear a lot of things, a lot of stereotypes. And to see a school open up and volunteers come through it is a breath of fresh air," said fourth grade teacher Laurence Tan.

The project is sponsored by the Mountain View company Coupons.com. The non-profit group Kaboom organized the volunteers, including one young woman who says she wanted to do something for kids.

"You can't be stuck in a building all day. That's not fun. Today we're building kids' fun," said volunteer Laneesha Alexander.

The volunteers say they fully expect the new playground to be ready for action by this Monday.