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Kelowna family invests in Recreation and Wellness Centre at Okanagan College

The Recsky family donated $30,000 to the Thrive Here campaign
Alex Recsky and his wife Ruth. (Okanagan College)

The family of Okanagan College’s first recreation and intramurals programmer in 1986, is giving back to the job he loved.

Alex Recsky, introduced thousands of students to sports and recreational opportunities during his 10 years with the college, until his retirement.

Now Recsky’s family is putting that same passion he had, behind a $30,000 donation to the Thrive Here campaign for the Recreation and Wellness Centre at OC’s Kelowna campus.

Recsky and his wife Ruth are currently in their 90s.

Keith, Recsky’s son, adds that his dad also worked and volunteered with many sports organizations and events since arriving in Kelowna in 1985 and continued that practice well into retirement.

“All four generations of our family have been involved with sports of all kinds in Kelowna, some more serious than others. Many of our most memorable moments come when we are at arenas, gyms, and outdoor spaces,” said Kyle Recsky, Alex’s grandson.

According to the college, during Recsky’s tenure at the educational institution in the late 80s and early ’90s, he was active in fundraising for a gymnasium for Okanagan University College, and one was built on the north campus in 1994. With the transition to two post-secondary institutions in 2005, the gym became part of UBC Okanagan and the need to build a gym at Okanagan College continues today.

Recognizing the need for a facility at OC, Cliff and Lois Serwa, honorary chairs for the Thrive Here campaign, are offering to match all donations up to $500,000.

“My parents have known Cliff and Lois for a long time. It’s not a secret that both families believe in supporting and giving back to the community. My mom and my dad are thrilled and humbled to be associated with the Serwas’ generous matching pledge for this needed project,” said Keith.

Recsky and Lois Serwa were both honoured with the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002. The recognition is awarded to Canadians who make outstanding and exemplary contributions to their communities or Canada as a whole. For his service to students and the greater community, Recsky was also honoured with OUC’s first Distinguished Service Award in 2003.

The Okanagan College Foundation has raised $9 million towards its $14 million campaign goal to build a Recreation and Wellness Centre.

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