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Playful City USA Program to Offer Grants

Following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2006, KaBOOM! started "Operation Playground: Rebuilding Playgrounds; Restoring Childhoods," a new two-year initiative to build 100 playgrounds in Gulf Coast communities affected by the Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Photo by Kaboom! of International School of Louisiana, Sept. 26, 2006.

KaBOOM! has launched Playful City USA, designed to offer towns and cities "benchmarks for creating an agenda on play." The company is giving financial incentives to the first 30 cities who successfully submit their application and are selected as a Playful City USA. Selected cities will be eligible to apply for grants up to $25,000 to support their play plans--anything from funding a citywide Play Day to advertising play opportunities to purchasing play equipment or doing playground maintenance.

To achieve Playful City USA status five commitments must be met:

  1. Create a local play task force and/or commission.
  2. Conduct a playspace audit.
  3. Design an annual action plan for play.
  4. Set benchmarks for growth in city spending on capital projects and maintenance of playspaces.
  5. Proclaim and celebrate an annual "Play Day"

"Remember don't recreate the wheel when applying, look at your existing infrastructure for play and adapt it to the application," suggests a KaBOOM! spokesperson. An early deadline (July 15) for city applications will allow a national reviewer to either pre-approve the application or provide feedback prior to the "regular" deadline, Sept. 15, 2007. For more info, google "playfulcityusa."

Note: KaBOOM will hold a national recognition ceremony for Playful City USA at the National League of Cities Conference and Expo in New Orleans, Nov. 14 -17.

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October 20, 2019, 5:49 pm PDT

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