The LEGO® Children’s Fund today announced its award of a $50,000 grant to the National Inclusion Project, which serves children and young people with disabilities across the country. The funds will enable an additional 20 “Let’s ALL Play” recreational programs, which encourages the implementation of inclusive recreational experiences to children with disabilities, to be deployed in communities across the country.
With this support from The LEGO® Children’s Fund, The National Inclusion Project will be able to provide training, scholarships, and staff expertise so that children with disabilities can participate in recreational programs in their communities. After participating in Let’s ALL Play training, program providers feel confident and competent in serving all children, parents see their children make friends, and children without disabilities understand that people of any ability contribute to society.
The National Inclusion Project was founded in 2003 by entertainer Clay Aiken, and works to bridge the gap between young people with disabilities and the world around them by opening doors for all children to be included together, primarily achieved through recreational programs and training to make after school programs, summer camps and classroom activities inclusive for all children. Its Let’s ALL Play program is a research-validated national model funded by the Project that brings an inclusive recreational experience to children with disabilities by giving them the same experience as children without disabilities. All children come together to participate in typical recreational activities such as swimming, arts and crafts, community service, physical fitness and more. Over the last three years, the Project has provided training, curriculum, and support to YMCAs, Boys & Girls Clubs, 4H, CampFire USA, and other community organizations.
“The LEGO Children’s Fund is our way of supporting organizations that, promote children’s creative development,” said Søren Torp Laursen, president, LEGO Systems, Inc. and LEGO Children’s Fund chairman. “We’re thrilled to be able to support The National Inclusion Project and the work they do to bring all children together through play and recreation in communities across the country.”
Typically, only one grant per year is made to a non-profit group identified and selected by The LEGO Children’s Fund Board of Directors. This year marks the first time that the Fund opened the national large grant nomination process to employees, and as a result, increased its 2011 grant-making total to $1,000,000.
About The LEGO Children’s Fund
The LEGO Children’s Fund supports organizations and programs in the United States that champion the importance of creativity in a child’s life and are dedicated to inspiring and encouraging youth creativity through monetary grants that subsidize the costs of fostering children’s exploration of personal creativity in all forms. Guidelines and grant applications are available at www.LEGOchildrensfund.org.
LEGO and the LEGO Children’s Fund logo are trademarks of the LEGO Group, used here with permission. © 2012 The LEGO Group. All rights reserved.