Playground to enhance family well-being
PHILADELPHIA, June 8, 2013 /CNW/ - A dream is now a reality for children
in West Oak Lane, Philadelphia as their drawings were turned into a new
playground today. In less than eight hours, a vacant lot was
transformed into a play space and dedicated as the Martha C. Young
Community Playground. Thanks to the help of more than 200 volunteers
from ForestersTM, the Prince Hall Alumni Foundation and non-profit KaBOOM!, the new
playground will serve more than 54,000 children and their families in
the community for years to come.
"Foresters believes in providing opportunities for families to spend
quality time together," said Kasia Czarski, Foresters Senior Vice
President, Chief Membership and Marketing Officer. "A playground is an
important piece for the revitalization of a community. Not only does it
provide a first step towards keeping children healthy, but it's a safe,
central location for the entire neighborhood to get together."
Planning for the playground began at a Design Day event held in April
when local children and community leaders met with organizers from
KaBOOM! and Foresters to design their dream playground. The children's
drawings were then used to create the final playground design.
The Martha C. Young Community Playground will eventually serve more than
54,000 children from nearby schools, daycare centers and recreation
centers, as well as their families, in this West Oak Lane neighborhood,
where currently, no community playground exists. In addition to
providing children with a safe place to play, this playground aligns
with Philadelphia's Department of Public Health's Get Healthy Philly!
initiative, that works to provide Philadelphians with increased
opportunities for physical activity in an effort to reduce obesity and
Since 2006, Foresters has invested over $7 million with KaBOOM! with
almost 100 playgrounds built or planned across the U.S. and Canada.
Over their 15 year lifespan, these playgrounds will provide more than
2.6 million children and their families with an opportunity to spend
quality time together. Foresters is a KaBOOM! National Partner and a
founding member of the KaBOOM! Leadership Circle - a group of
organizations providing long-term guidance and support to KaBOOM! and
"Today was a magical experience," said Sterlen Barr, PHAF's Board Chair
and chief organizer of the playground project. "After months of
planning, fundraising, and gathering together community members to make
this playground happen - in less than a day, it's done! It takes a
village to raise a child, and it's taken a village to build our
playground. We are so excited for the children - they deserve a place
to run, play, and have fun."
Thanks to the work of Foresters, the Prince Hall Alumni Foundation and
KaBOOM!, children and their families now have a 2,400 square-foot
playground to call home that includes features such as an Inclined
Cliff Hanger, RockBlocks Climbing Wall and Triple Racer Slide.
A passionate advocate for family well-being, Foresters recently launched
the Tech Timeout™ challenge, which encourages families to take a pledge
to turn off all electronic devices for an hour a day for one week. For
more details, visit techtimeout.com.
About Prince Hall Alumni Foundation
The Prince Hall Alumni Foundation, a non-profit organization whose
mission is helping to enhance the lives of Prince Hall students through
education, community outreach and advocacy. The foundation is a young
organization working to better the lives of the children in their West
Oak Lane community. Our children are in crisis because of the violence
surrounding them in Philadelphia.
Foresters™ is a life insurance provider with a difference. The
fraternal benefit society, founded in 1874, supports family well-being
through quality products, unique member benefits and inspiring
community activities. Foresters shares its financial strength with over
one million members in Canada, the United States and the United
Kingdom. For more information, visit foresters.com.
Foresters™ is the trade name and a trademark of The Independent Order of
Foresters, a fraternal benefit society, 789 Don Mills Road, Toronto,
Canada M3C 1T9; its subsidiaries are licensed to use this mark.
Tech Timeout and the Tech Timeout logo are trademarks of The Independent
Order of Foresters
KaBOOM! is the national non-profit dedicated to giving kids the
childhood they deserve by bringing play to those who need it most.
Children today spend less time playing outdoors than any previous
generation, a fact that is having disastrous consequences on their
health, achievement levels, and overall well-being. Social entrepreneur
Darell Hammond founded non-profit KaBOOM! in 1996 in Washington, D.C.
with a vision of creating a great place to play within walking distance
of every child in America because children need to play actively every
day at home, in school and in their communities. Since then, KaBOOM!
has mapped over 90,000 places to play, built more than 2,200
playgrounds, and successfully advocated for play policies in hundreds
of cities across the country. KaBOOM! also provides communities with
online tools to self-organize and take action to support play on both a
local and national level. Hammond chronicles the founding of the
organization and the importance of the cause of play in his The New York Times Best Seller KaBOOM!: A Movement to Save Play, now out in paperback. The book details how businesses and communities
can work together to save play for children across the country. All
author proceeds support KaBOOM!. Headquartered in Washington, D.C.,
KaBOOM! also has an office in San Mateo, Calif. For more information,
For further information:
Sterlen Barr or Jiana Murdic, PHAF, 267-809-1775 or 302-898-4545, email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Maria Ganogiannis, Foresters, 800-461-8431, ext. 4096, email@example.com
Mike Vietti, KaBOOM!, 785-320-2137, firstname.lastname@example.org