Yokohama Joins Ka-BOOM! to Build Playgrounds for Earth Day, and Beyond!
The festive one-day build on Earth Day was done to ensure area children can get the balanced and active play they need, and to make it even better, all the new playground equipment installed is environmentally safe.
YTC and KaBOOM! were also joined by Orange County California community groups Habitat for Humanity and NeighborWorks, along with approximately 200 local volunteers, to assist in the one-day build at Green Park.
“This is our first build with KaBOOM! and we’re excited to bring this local community a new playground, where the kids will have a fun, safe place to play,” said Alan Holtschneider, director of marketing for Yokohama, which is based in nearby Santa Ana. “Green Park in San Juan Capistrano is ideal and we’re pleased that the families there will benefit for years to come.”
Yokohama, KaBOOM!, Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, and NeighborWorks Orange County met with local parents and their children to help design the playground and pick out color schemes and equipment for the kids to play on.
“The kids were the ‘playground design experts,’” Holtschneider said. “Many of their ideas and equipment choices made it into the final design, including a tire swing, which was the overwhelming favorite item to have.”
Highlights of the playground build include a total renovation of Green Park. Brand-new environmentally safe, “Cradle to Cradle”-certified playground equipment from Playworld Systems were be installed, as well.
“The Earth-friendly playground equipment was an important consideration for us,” said Holtschneider. “Yokohama has always been an environmentally focused company, so to build a green playground for kids fits in with our corporate philosophy. And with the build happening on April 22 – Earth Day – it really makes the whole event a special occasion.”
The old playground equipment from Green Park was removed and completely refurbished by NeighborWorks, then sent to an orphanage in Baja, Mexico for children to play on.
Holtschneider said more builds will be announced in the future. YTC recently signed a three-year multichannel partnership with KaBOOM!, which is also the charity recipient of the Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic in Prattville, Alabama. All proceeds from the annual ladies golf tournament will fund future playground builds and help provide children with active play areas so they can grow into successful adults.
“This partnership puts kids first and provides them play opportunities that will help them get the recommended 60 minutes of daily physical activity they need to become healthy and fit,” Holtschneider said.
“Yokohama is really committed to helping us bring children balanced and active play into their lives,” said Eilah Brown, project manager at KaBOOM! “This first playground build in San Juan Capistrano will affect the lives of many children in a positive way for years to come.”
KaBOOM! is the national non-profit dedicated to bringing balanced and active play into the daily lives of all kids, particularly those growing up in poverty in America. Since 1996, KaBOOM! has collaborated with partners to build, open or improve nearly 16,000 playgrounds, engaged more than one million volunteers and served 7.4 million children. KaBOOM! creates great places to play, inspires communities to promote and support play, and works to drive the national discussion about the importance of play in fostering healthy lives and communities. To learn why #playmatters: visit kaboom.org or join the conversation at twitter.com/kaboom or facebook.com/kaboom.