More than 200 volunteers from BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation, The Salvation Army, organizers from KaBOOM! and the community will join forces on Tuesday to give area kids a new playground at the East Lake Corps and Community Center.
The design is based on children’s drawings created at a special design event in September.
The kick-off ceremony will be held from 8:30-9 a.m. The playground will then be constructed and a ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held around 2:30 p.m.
East Lake Corps & Community Center is at 2410 East 28th St.
KaBOOM! officials say a playground is more than a playground. It’s a brain-expander, friend-maker, and muscle-builder. Play is central to a child’s ability to grow into a productive adult. It can transform children from sedentary, bored and solitary to physically, mentally and socially active.
Since 1996, KaBOOM! has been dedicated to the goal of giving all kids – particularly those growing up in poverty in America – the childhood they deserve, filled with balanced and active play, so they can thrive. With its partners, KaBOOM! has built, improved and opened nearly 16,700 playgrounds, engaged more than one million volunteers, and served 8.5 million kids (#playmatters).
The new playground will bring more than 900 kids in Chattanooga one step closer to having a play-filled childhood.
The Salvation Army in East Lake does not have an outdoor playground where at risk youth can play and just be a kid. These children are surrounded by gang violence and drugs and forced to grow up way too fast, said Salvation Army officials. The Salvation Army serves as a safe-haven for them where they can play and not be preyed upon. Currently, The Salvation Army’s only recreation is a gym, game room and swimming pool. A playground will offer a year-round opportunity to play outdoors.
The playground is the 18th built by BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation and KaBOOM!. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation supports KaBOOM! in promoting and protecting a child’s right to active play at home, at school and in the community.