As we wrote in our post about our support for Make-A-Wish® Canada, Love Child Organics takes pride in giving back, particularly to children. We make it a priority to include charitable ventures as part of our business, because it speaks to the core of who we are. That’s why we are happy to announce that we will be launching a new campaign, benefiting a great foundation also based out of Whistler, called Playground Builders.
Starting May 1st, 2013, one cent from every single pouch of Love Child Organics purchased will go directly to Playground Builders, a Canadian registered charity dedicated to creating play and building hope for children in war-torn areas. Since inception in 2007, Playground Builders has built approximately 20 playgrounds per year, providing safe play to over 250,000 children. They receive a constant flow of proposals for new playgrounds and their challenge is to meet the extensive needs of the schools, orphanages and communities seeking a safe place for children to play. Through Love Child Organics’ commitment to donating one cent per pouch, we hope to be able to make a difference to these children, and support Playground Builders in their goal to build hope, one playground at a time.
It goes without saying that building playgrounds in war torn countries is a complex task. One of the many reasons we are so in awe of Playground Builders is that through their thoughtful processes, they create a wide-reaching positive impact with each and every playground they build. They do this through engaging local people and NGOs to find schools and communities with the strongest need for a playground. They support buying local equipment and supplies and use local contractors to build and complete the installations. And they rely on local people to monitor the building process and the ongoing upkeep of the play areas. The result? They not only build playgrounds. They create positive change and a new social pattern in communities.
The entire Playground Builders website is incredibly informative and inspiring and I urge you to visit it when you have a moment. The section below, which describes the impact of their playgrounds is an absolute ‘must read’, so I included it here:
PLAY AND EDUCATION
Play is critical to the healthy development of children. The United Nations High Commission for Human Rights has recognized “play” as a right of every child. We know that play contributes to the physical, social, cognitive and emotional well-being of a child. However, in many war-stricken areas outdoor play can be dangerous. Most schools, orphanages and communities lack any safe venue for outdoor play and exercise.
Parents, teachers and children express the excitement and joy our playgrounds bring to their schools and communities. Playgrounds provide for play, learning and escape from the realities of war. Many communities have seen an increase in school attendance following the construction of a playground. Many schools use our playgrounds as part of their curriculum. Providing a space for children to play provides them with opportunities for physical exercise and for social and emotional development. School principals have reported finding children more attentive in class. Some are seeing improvement in test scores following the implementation of our playgrounds. Playgrounds are helping children build childhoods. Happy children make happy adults. As the future leaders of these countries, children are benefiting from the joy and learning our playgrounds provide.
Playgrounds can help connect a community. Our playgrounds provide a meeting place where parents can interact and together observe their children engaging in healthy socialization and play. A sense of shared excitement and pride helps motivate communities and creates optimism for the progress they are witnessing. Playgrounds can also provide a peaceful respite in what typically can be a chaotic and stressful existence. In some areas, our playgrounds provide a venue for children and adults of different backgrounds to interact for the first time. This can only help achieve the ultimate goal of peace in these regions.
Playground Builders partners with local businesses and non-profit organizations to build safe playgrounds. Our local partners help identify local needs and safe locations. Upon completion of the playgrounds, our partners help to maintain and secure them. Local contractors are always used to build, install and help maintain our playgrounds. We use a local bid and tender system whereby the selected contractor builds the playgrounds using local materials and labor. This creates jobs for local people, thereby improving the local economy. Jobs provide income, stability, pride and dignity for the local people who otherwise must leave the region and their families to find work. The availability of local jobs reduces the chances of local people being among the millions of economic refugees in these war-torn countries.
Playgrounds are more than just physical places to play. They are spaces where kids can be kids, community members can feel connected and empowered, new possibilities find a strong foundation and peace and hope begins. Playground Builders builds hope, one playground at a time.
I look forward to updating you regularly on the incredible work of Playground Builders, and the impact your donations, made through the purchase of Love Child pouches, is having on the lives of children.
For more information about Playground Builders and their extraordinary work, check out their website at: www.playgroundbuilders.org