Six B.C. communities win $360,000 in play space revitalizations
BCAA Play Here: public vote decides three, $100,000 winners: Black Creek, Oliver and Sayward
July 2, 2019, Burnaby, B.C.: Children in Black Creek and Sayward on Vancouver Island, and Oliver in the Okanagan, will all get new play spaces worth $100,000. The three communities got the most votes from British Columbians in this year’s BCAA Play Here —a community investment program that delivers revitalized play spaces to underserved B.C. communities.
Now in its fourth year, BCAA Play Here received hundreds of nominations this spring from community groups across B.C.. Judges assessed community need and impact and shortlisted six finalists. British Columbians then cast nearly 200,000 votes to decide the winners.
Three, $100,000 play spaces:
- Black Creek Community Centre Playground: Black Creek is a rural community with few gathering spaces. Its only playground is over 30 years old, and the next nearest place for kids to play is 15 kilometres away.
- Oliver Small Wheels Playground: Oliver has limited options for local youth and the community’s dream is a play space for everyone from young children, right through to youth and teens. This is the first ever small wheels/skatepark winner and will revitalize an existing, aging and practically unusable space to better support physical and social health.
- Sayward School Playground: The community has fundraised tirelessly for over 5 years to replace a 25-year-old playground. With only one other, extremely dated play area in the small village community, the closest reasonable play option is in the nearest town - over 75 kilometres away.
New runners-up cash prizes:
New this year, the remaining three finalists win cash prizes to get them closer to completing their play projects, thanks to Evo Car Share (created by BCAA).
- Salmon Arm: The Beehive at South Canoe Elementary – $30,000
- Alexis Creek: Tl’etinqox School – $20,000
- Coquitlam: All Together Now Inclusive Play Space at Mediated Learning Academy – $10,000
“Congratulations to our BCAA Play Here winners. The passion that our finalists have for their communities shows that great play spaces aren’t just for kids, they impact entire communities,” says Shawn Pettipas, BCAA’s director of Community Engagement. “Our new runners-up cash prizes mean we can help all six of these very deserving communities get closer to turning their play space dreams into reality.”
In the next few months, BCAA will work closely with the three winning finalists on customized designs and plans to give each community their own unique play area. BCAA will then deliver and create vibrant, brand new play spaces to the winners. Remaining finalists will receive their cash prizes when they’re ready to progress their play projects.
Sara Holland, BCAA
The most trusted organization in British Columbia by its Members, BCAA serves 1 in 3 B.C. households with industry-leading products including home, auto and travel insurance, roadside assistance, Evo Car Share and full auto service at BCAA’s Auto Service Centres. BCAA has a long history focused on keeping kids safe on the road and at play through community programs such as its School Safety Patrol, Community Child Car Seat Program and BCAA Play Here. Please visit bcaa.com.