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ESPN Volunteers Improve Little Neck Kids’ Lives and Futures with Play

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Samuel Field Y, Disney, ESPN, and KaBOOM! Celebrate Enriching the Lives of Kids and Families by Building a Healthy, Safe Space to Play in One Day

Little Neck, NY – More than 2,000 kids now have a new opportunity to get the balanced and active play they need so they can thrive. An empty lot was transformed into a kid-designed play space in less than eight hours with the help of more than 200 people from Samuel Field Y (@SamuelFieldY), ESPN (@ESPNCitizenship), Disney (@CitizenDisney), area residents and organizers from KaBOOM! (@kaboom).

“We are so grateful to KaBOOM!, who partnered us with ESPN and Disney to design and build our agency’s third state-of-the-art, inclusive playground that can support and provide fun, recreational and educational play opportunities for all of the children in our community,” said Jared Mintz of Samuel Field Y. “Today truly was an exhilarating day of creation, collaboration and teamwork and we look forward to the play possibilities that lie ahead!”

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. The design is based on children’s drawings created at a special event in July. Their ideas were then incorporated into the final playground design.

Since 1996, KaBOOM! has been dedicated to the goal of ensuring that all children get the balanced and active play they need to thrive because #PlayMatters. The new playground is one of many made possible with support from Disney as part of The Walt Disney Company Healthy Living Commitment, a long-standing commitment to create healthier generations by making healthy living fun and simple.

“Through this play space, we’re proud to demonstrate that the power of sport combined with community leadership can work together to give children a healthier future,” said Kevin Martinez, vice president of ESPN Corporate Citizenship. “This project helps ensure that the youth in the community have access to a safe, accessible play space within walking distance of where they live or go to school.”

KaBOOM! works to accelerate efforts that move every child in America to play every day. Together, Disney and KaBOOM! have built more than 75 new play spaces across America giving nearly 100,000 kids access to healthier lifestyles and safe places to play and grow.

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About Samuel Field Y

The Samuel Field YM & YWHA, known as “The Everybody Place”, is a not-for-profit, multi-service, multi-site community based organization that provides a diverse array of programs and services to over 35,000 residents of Queens and Western Nassau Counties. In addition to our flagship site in Little Neck, the Y operates in over thirty sites throughout the community, the largest of which include the Bay Terrace Center in Bayside, and the Central Queens Y in Forest Hills.

Since its inception, over 60 years ago, the Samuel Field Y has been dedicated to the core element of its mission – enhancing the quality of individual, family and communal life through service to people of all ages, ability levels and stages of life, regardless of their background and ability to pay.

About ESPN Corporate Citizenship
ESPN believes that, at its very best, sports uplifts the human spirit. Its corporate citizenship programs use power of sport to positively address society’s needs through strategic community investments, cause marketing programs, collaboration with sports organizations and employee volunteerism, while also utilizing its diverse media assets. For more information go to www.espn.com/citizenship.

About The Walt Disney Company
The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a leading diversified international entertainment and media enterprise with the following business segments: media networks, parks and resorts, studio entertainment, consumer products and interactive media. Being a good corporate citizen is a time-honored Disney tradition. Through contributions, collaborations with local organizations, in-kind gifts and volunteering, Disney helps to brighten the lives of kids and families in need and strengthen communities around the world. For more information visit,  TheWaltDisneyCompany.com/Citizenship or Twitter.com/CitizenDisney.

About KaBOOM!
KaBOOM! is the national non-profit dedicated to 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. Since 1996, KaBOOM! has collaborated with partners to build, open, or improve more than 16,700 playgrounds, engaged more than one million volunteers, and served 8.5 million kids. KaBOOM! creates great places to play, inspires communities to promote and support play, and works to drive the national discussion about the importance of play in fostering healthy and productive lives. To learn why #playmatters and why cities are embracing #playability: visit kaboom.org or join the conversation at twitter.com/kaboom or  facebook.com/kaboom.