Outdoor Discoveries

Play-Place is requesting a donation of up to $43,935.98 to provide equipment and programming for a new outdoor adaptive playground to offer enrichment and completeness of a physical fitness and education regimen for individuals affected by special needs of all ages, as well as their siblings. A new outdoor play area will help us deliver structured outdoor fitness activities, free-form fun, exercise, bike riding lessons, pedestrian skills, expand summer camp programming, as well as reduce COVID risks by being outdoors. This new feature will also assist in fulfilling facility requirements of an outdoor play area for future expansion goals to offer day-care services, proffering a sustainable income source for Play-Place. We believe physical activity is an essential component of every child’s healthy development, and helps kids build strength, power, and agility as well as basic movement and gross motor skills, including hand-eye coordination, running and throwing. These activities build confidence, camaraderie and community.

Funding of a Play-Place playground will enable us to significantly impact the horrifying statistics of 38.5% obesity rate that grips this population of individuals. Funding for this project would help us expand our programming to outdoor activities, significantly increasing the number of campers and families to attend Play-Place during the summer months (which is typically our slowest season of the year due to families wanting to be outside, rather than inside). With a clear understanding that health and fitness can provide a sense of purpose, personal accomplishment and fun, Play-Place seeks to deliver transformative heart healthy, physical fun via a safe and inclusive environment. Our play area would feature swings, including wheelchair accessibility swings for those with motor deficits; a trike/bike path with a pedestrian lane/track for walking and jogging activities; portable picnic tables for outdoor lunch options; 2 traffic lights for street crossing skills programming and more.


OUR GOAL

Our goal is to develop unique and innovative curriculum and programming to include kids’ cardio, teen youth conditioning, wellness workshops, bike-riding lessons, street-crossing skills and more – with the use of our new outdoor play area. This space will enable Play-Place to enhance our field trip curriculum as offered to area school districts with a full curriculum of adaptive PE. Statistics show that physical fitness and outdoor play improves health, increases cognitive performance, encourages socialization, team spirit and long-term healthy living. The number one barrier for individuals with disabilities is accessibility – to adaptive programs, to inclusion, to opportunities. Due to barriers, individuals with disabilities are more likely to be obese and subject to weight-related chronic conditions. The combination of disability and weight gain can create a vicious cycle, creating additional health burdens and further restricting function and independence. Physical activity in a safe (fenced in) environment is a critical component to controlling weight, improving mental health, and lowering the risk for early death, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, some cancers and cardiovascular disease, as well as supporting daily living activities and independence.


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