Celebrating 2022’s Big Moments

  1. Updates

As 2022 comes to a close, we’re reflecting on big moments that took place across Playworks nation this year.

 1. Celebrating 25 Years 

25 years of impact graphic

The 2021-2022 school year marked a major milestone for our team as we celebrated 25 years of bringing the power of play to kids across the country.

Since our launch in 1996, Playworks has served 2,174,400 kids through 3,259 school partnerships, out-of-school providers, and community organizations through on-site services, professional development, and digital support.

These partnerships — supported by network of adults committed to our mission — brought the social, emotional, and physical benefits of play to an entire generation of young people. 

But the work does not stop here. We are already planning how the power of play will continue to impact our world over the next 25 years and beyond!

 2. Playing with Sports Superstars

athletes playing with students

You never know who will stop by a Playworks playground to visit the next generation of allstars.  

Throughout the year, special guests visited Playworks schools for unique and exciting days of play. From ball hockey with the LA Kings to freeze tag with the Milwaukee Bucks, there were games, laughs, and of course plenty of play enjoyed by all. 

 3. Taking Play on the Road

In February 2022, Playworks Southern California introduced a new approach to closing the play equity gap with Park on the Move. This mobile program brought a unique play experience to youth in neighborhoods with limited access to park and recreation space.

Launched in collaboration with the LA84 Foundation, Play Equity Fund, and the County of Los Angeles Department of Parks & Recreation, the program transformed schools, libraries, and church parking lots into safe spaces for kids to engage in play alongside caring adults. 

In its first year, Park on the Move reached over 400 kids and over 230 parents, caregivers, and youth development professionals within Los Angeles County neighborhoods.

Learn more about Park on the Move and the impact it made during its first year of operation. 

 4. Building the Game Plan

The Game Plan header graphic

Our new, free webinar series, The Game Plan, launched this year to help connect educators and administrators with the tools they need to bring the power of play to their schools.

In each session, education professionals from across the country explore what makes a great recess and the impact of quality play on students in the classroom and beyond. Of course, it wouldn’t be a Playworks program without some interactive games included.

So far, we have explored five ways to have a great recess and answered three important questions about bringing play indoors. 

What’s coming up next? 

View the full webinar schedule and reserve your spot at the next two sessions. 

 5. A Major Gift

students at recess

Playworks was honored to announce a generous gift from philanthropist MacKenzie Scott this year. As a finalist for Time’s Person of the Year, MacKenzie has become known for her unsolicited contributions to many incredible nonprofit organizations. Being chosen to receive this gift served as a testament to our commitment to the communities we partner with. 

MacKenzie’s gift, along with the generosity of community members across the country, will help make play accessible to more kids and fund our work with schools and community-based organizations supporting the social, emotional, and physical development of kids. 


Thank you (and a huge Whoosh Clap) to all of our school and out of school time partners, coaches, supporters, and staff for another year of sharing the power of play with more than 500,000 kids across the country this year. We look forward to what we will accomplish together in 2023.
Donate now to make a difference for kids in our community in the years to come.

 

More Updates


January 19, 2023

Introducing New Members of Playworks Board of Directors ›

Playworks is thrilled to welcome three new members to our National Board of Directors. Each brings a unique set of talents and perspective that will support Playworks’ mission. The individuals who joined the Playworks Board in December 2022 are: Leslie Boissiere Vice President, External Affairs Annie E. Casey Foundation Leslie oversees the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s…

kids playing catch
kids playing catch

January 10, 2023

Understanding the Complex Simplicities of Play ›

Play is a behavior that is natural and has existed for thousands of years and across species. It combines a set of made-up rules or norms and a willingness to explore. Researchers, scientists, and doctors have studied the effects of play on kids–and adults–and understand that this natural behavior has tremendous benefits. As the American…

top rated nonprofit logo
top rated nonprofit logo

October 27, 2022

Playworks earns 2022 Top-Rated Nonprofit Award ›

Playworks is proud to receive the 2022 Top-Rated Award by GreatNonprofits, the leading provider of user reviews about nonprofit organizations. Playworks was honored with this award based on the large number of positive reviews written by our schools, supporters, and parents. “Our work is not possible without our school partners, board members, volunteers, and all…