PLANO, Texas, April 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Dr Pepper Snapple Group (NYSE: DPS) and national nonprofit KaBOOM! announced the availability of nearly 2,000 grants to communities across the U.S. through Let's Play, a community partnership led by DPS to help get kids and families active nationwide. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that only one in five children has a place to play within walking distance. To help end this play deficit, the partnership will award a variety of Let's Play grants to help build new playgrounds, update existing playgrounds or keep playgrounds open longer. Starting today, communities can apply online for various levels of financial support at www.LetsPlay.com.
"Today's announcement marks a big milestone in our Let's Play mission," said Larry D. Young, president and CEO of Dr Pepper Snapple Group. "These grants will help provide the tools, places and inspiration to help communities across the country increase physical activity."
The grants are part of the first Let's Play initiative introduced in November of last year – a $15 million, three-year commitment to KaBOOM!, the national nonprofit that's saving play by ensuring there is a great place to play within walking distance of every child. Together through Let's Play, DPS and KaBOOM! will build or fix up 2,000 playgrounds by the end of 2013, benefiting an estimated five million children across North America.
"Through our partnership with Let's Play, KaBOOM! is making huge strides in saving play across America," said Darell Hammond, CEO and founder of KaBOOM!. "DPS has demonstrated an amazing show of support through this initiative. I can't think of a better way to celebrate the 15th anniversary of KaBOOM! than with the creation of so many great places to play."
Each Let's Play grant satisfies a different community need – whether it's helping to create a brand-new playground, update or restore an older playground, or extend the life of an existing play space. Some of the available grants include:
- Let's Play Playground Construction Grants: To help cities and community organizations plan and build new playgrounds.
- Let's Play Playground Improvement Grants: To help community organizations improve existing playgrounds by adding shade structures or other play equipment like Energi exercise stations or Imagination Playground in a Box – a breakthrough playspace concept designed by architect David Rockwell to encourage child-directed, unstructured free play.
- Let's Play Playground Maintenance Grants: To encourage community involvement in playground improvement projects that make local playgrounds cleaner, safer and more inviting to kids and families.
- Let's Play Joint Use Grants: To provide funding for school districts and municipalities to explore and implement joint-use agreements to help keep local playgrounds open longer.
The first five Let's Play grants to be awarded will go to the winners of the KaBOOM! "Promote Your Playground" video contest, an interactive competition that invites consumers to upload a short video showing why their community needs a playground. The top-10 video entries competing for five $15,000 Let's Play grants are now available online at LetsPlay.com. Five of the finalists will be selected by a public vote to win a grant to be used for new playground equipment. The voting period opens online today and runs through Sunday, May 15.
Recognizing the challenges that many cities are facing, separate grants are available for cities in the KaBOOM! Playful City USA program to expand access to existing playgrounds or build new ones. Additionally, some Let's Play grants will be awarded through video and design contests hosted by KaBOOM! each year, while other grants will be awarded to communities looking to complete playground projects already underway.
Consumers are encouraged to visit www.LetsPlay.com to apply for grants, join the conversation, and learn how to get involved in the partnership.
About Dr Pepper Snapple Group
Dr Pepper Snapple Group (NYSE: DPS) is the leading producer of flavored beverages in North America and the Caribbean. Our success is fueled by more than 50 brands that are synonymous with refreshment, fun and flavor. We have 6 of the top 10 non-cola soft drinks, and 9 of our 12 leading brands are No. 1 in their flavor categories. In addition to our flagship Dr Pepper and Snapple brands, our portfolio includes Sunkist soda, 7UP, A&W, Canada Dry, Crush, Mott's, Squirt, Hawaiian Punch, Penafiel, Clamato, Schweppes, Venom Energy, Rose's and Mr & Mrs T mixers. To learn more about our iconic brands and Plano, Texas-based company, please visit www.drpeppersnapple.com.
About Let's Play
Let's Play is a community partnership led by Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc. (NYSE: DPS) to get kids and families active nationwide. The first Let's Play initiative is a $15 million, three-year commitment to KaBOOM!, the national nonprofit that's saving play. Together, through Let's Play, DPS and KaBOOM! will build or fix up 2,000 playgrounds by the end of 2013, benefiting an estimated five million children across North America.
KaBOOM! is the national nonprofit dedicated to saving play. Because all children deserve to be active and healthy, KaBOOM! works to ensure that every child in America has a great place to play within walking distance. Since 1996, KaBOOM! has used its innovative community-build model to bring together businesses and communities to construct more than 1,900 new places to play across North America. KaBOOM! also fights the Play Deficit with online tools that empower communities to join the movement to save play. The KaBOOM! website, kaboom.org, allows communities to self-organize and take action to support play on a both a local and national level.
SOURCE Dr Pepper Snapple Group