Recognized for efforts to increase play opportunities for children, Tucson was among the 213 cities and towns across the United States to earn the 2012 Playful City USA designation from national non-profit KaBOOM! Presented by The Humana Foundation, Playful City USA is a national program advocating for local policies that increase play opportunities for children and is a key platform in combating the play deficit.
“Some of the most innovative concepts and cost-effective programs are being developed in Playful City USA communities,” says Darell Hammond, Founder and CEO of KaBOOM! and author of The New York Times Best Seller KaBOOM!: How One Man Built a Movement to Save Play. “They are key allies in the fight to combat the play deficit and serve as outstanding role models for government and community leaders across the country.”
KaBOOM!, the national non-profit organization dedicated to saving play, created Playful City USA in 2007 to help local governments address the play deficit and it is through mayors, city council members, parks and recreation departments, school districts and community leaders that the program succeeds in benefitting children.
Other Arizona cities to receive the 2012 Playful City USA designation are Phoenix, Yuma, Buckeye, Casa Grande, Chandler, Coolidge, Gilbert, Mesa and Oro Valley.
Each of the 2012 Playful City USA communities demonstrated creative commitments to addressing the play deficit. Playful City USA celebrates and highlights these unique initiatives developed by communities across the country. A primary goal of Playful City USA is to encourage cities and towns to share ideas, concepts and programs in an effort to increase play opportunities for children.
The 213 Playful City USA communities are now eligible for $15,000, $20,000 and $30,000 grants via Let’s Play, a community partnership led by Dr Pepper Snapple Group, to get kids and families active nationwide. Grant recipients will be announced on June 4, 2012. For more information and a full list of honorees, visit playfulcityusa.org.