Keeping Portland Playful – A Year in Review

  1. Updates

We are fortunate to live in Portland. The connection between residents and community runs deep in these parts. As we gear up for the new school year we thought we’d share a few highlights of 2010/11;

  • We’ve been busy building new corporate and community partnerships and strengthening past ones throughout the year. Our Corporate Kickball Tournament brought teams from Nike, Portland Trail Blazers, Portland Pilots, Symantec, Columbia Sportswear, Interworks, Kaiser Permanente, Kohl’s, the Children’s Hospital at Legacy Emanuel and PPS Principals. Lots of cheers and high-fives helped to make this annual fundraiser an amazing success!
  • We helped to welcome three recent recruits to the Portland Trail Blazers Rip City style and taught them a new game, kickball! After a press conference at the Regence Boys and Girls Club introducing Raymond Felton, Nolan Smith and Jon Diebler, they played kickball with the kids looking awesome in Playworks gear.
  • Held monthly Jr. Coach training’s, focusing on leadership, teamwork and conflict resolution skills and hosted our 2nd Annual Jr. Coach conference where nearly 170 student leaders from 14 schools came together for a day of cooperative play and lessons in respect and inclusion.
  • Portland increased our Training Program across the NW from Brookings OR to Seattle WA.  In addition to serving nearly 6,000 children in 14 low-income schools in the Portland Public School district, Playworks provides recess training, support and technical assistance to 12 schools in three Portland Metro school districts and their 4,800 students.
  • More than 500 students participated in three Playworks developmental sports leagues, exposing girls to basketball, co-ed players to volleyball and soccer. In the spring we added a co-ed Football/Futbol Jamboree, nearly 200 kids played flag football and soccer.
  • Oregon Business magazine has named Playworks Portland one of the 100 Best Nonprofits to Work For in Oregon. The list is compiled to recognize nonprofits for fostering an outstanding workplace. The rankings were based on the confidential input of employees who answered questions about workplace satisfaction such as benefits, management, trust, work environment and career development. Scores and ranking of the winning100 nonprofits will appear in the October issue of Oregon Business and announced at a dinner event September 28th in Portland.
  • Playworks Portland provided service to the community beyond our work in the schools.  Each month, our AmeriCorps members volunteered throughout the Portland Metro area and beyond, we built playgrounds and assisted with gardening projects at schools, led team building games for volunteers and students at Big Brothers and Big Sisters, helped tidy up at our local Ronald McDonald House, repurposed building materials at the Rebuilding Center, participated in a Community Health Fair in Woodburn, and much more.

More Updates


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February 4, 2022

Believe in Me Foundation Visits with Playworks ›

Julie Wukelic, from the Believe in Me Foundation for Kids, visited with our ED Asia Wisecarver and SC Paige Evans last week. Playworks PacNW was recently rewarded with a $5,000 grant from the foundation. This grant will allow us to continue our work with schools in the Spokane area. We look forward to working with…

August 24, 2021

Playworks Founder Jill Vialet Publishes ‘Why Play Works’ ›

Play brings out the best in every kid. Over the course of 25 years since Jill Vialet founded Playworks, she and her colleagues, as well as researchers and play experts, have demonstrated precisely how and why play works to help kids learn and grow in the most positive and healthy ways. Jill gathered stories from people…

March 25, 2021

Top 6 Games to Play Physically Distant with No Equipment ›

As more and more schools transition back to in-person learning, we know educators are looking for games that are physically-distant and don’t require equipment. The need for play is more important than ever due to the isolation that our kids have endured during COVID-19. Play encourages creativity, flexibility, teamwork, and other critical social skills. We’ve…