Children of Veterans now have access to portable play systems in various VA Medical Center waiting rooms and Fisher Houses across the country.

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently partnered with KaBOOM! – a national non-profit dedicated to ensuring that all kids get the childhood they deserve filled with balanced and active play. Children accompanying their Veteran parents to VA appointments will be able to enjoy KaBOOM! play products under their parent’s supervision.

The KaBOOM!’ signature Imagination Playgrounds and Rigamajigs are portable and scalable. Each uniquely stirs children’s innate desire to create, imagine, and play.

The Imagination Playground’s foam parts are nontoxic and lightweight and can be placed both indoors and outdoors. The Rigamajig, best for indoor use, is a building kit that consists of wooden parts. The play products create a platform for healthy, social emotional and intellectual development through play.

The first Imagination Playground donations went to Fisher Houses in Gainesville, Fla. and Salt Lake City, Utah during September 2015 thanks to the generosity of The CarMax Foundation.

The partnership with KaBOOM! will also provide an opportunity for Veterans to participate in community playground builds. KaBOOM! is nationally known for partnering with communities and corporations to build play spaces in underserved communities. Since 1996, KaBOOM! has engaged more than one million volunteers and served 8.1 million children by building, opening, and improving nearly 16,300 playgrounds with its partners.

Veterans will get the chance to volunteer alongside community members, leaders, corporate sponsors, and employers in their own communities. Veterans will also experience the camaraderie and connection to the community that comes from volunteering. The partnership provides Veterans a platform to reconnect with their children, families, and communities, which will have a lasting impact on the Veterans’ physical and social health.

About the Author: Dorothy Butts- Valentine, Deputy Director, VHA, Office of Community Engagement

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Published on Nov. 6, 2015

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