RESTON, VA, June 14, 2011 — Head Start Body Start National Center for Physical Development and Outdoor Play today announced Pathfinder Kids Kampus as one of 436 recipients of a $5,000 grant to improve the outdoor play space at Pathfinder Kids Kampus of Huntington , IN.
The Early Head Start Center can purchase value added packages from one of 27 elite vendors The National Center was created through a federal grant to the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) and the American Association for Physical Activity and Recreation (AAPAR) from the Office of Head Start. According to Early Head Start Center Director Lisa Mettler, “We appreciate Head Start Body Start for helping us evaluate our play spaces and educate our children and their families about the value of physical activity and playing outdoors, in particular. This grant will enable our Early Head Start Center to be able to utilize our outdoor playgrounds to their fullest potential assisting us in bringing the classroom outside.”
“Outdoor play is associated with greater amounts of physical activity in children, and research has shown that opportunities for whole body exercise has a long lasting influence as preschool physical activity tracks throughout childhood,” Mettler concluded.
In addition to the play space improvement, each award-winning Early Head Start Center will have access to online courses, webinars and resource materials.
Head Start Body Start National Center for Physical Development and Outdoor Play (HSBS) is a project of the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) and the American Association for Physical Activity and Recreation (AAPAR), which are associations of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AAHPERD). Funding for HSBS is provided by the Office of Head Start (OHS), Administration for Children and Families, US Department of Health and Human Services. The purpose of HSBS is to increase physical activity, outdoor play and healthy eating among Head Start and Early Head Start children, families and staff. HSBS will assist Head Start programs in creating healthy learning environments, both in and outside the classroom, through structured and unstructured physical activity that leads to the physical, cognitive, social and emotional development of young children and reduces obesity and its associated costs. HSBS has three main objectives: (1) to inform and assist OHS in setting national priorities and developing policies; (2) to provide resources, training and technical assistance to Head Start and Early Head Start grantees; and (3) to administer and support grants for construction or improvement of outdoor play spaces at Head Start centers.
Pathfinder Kids Kampus, Huntington, offers Early Head Start programming for children 0 to 3 and expectant mothers, early intervention services along with child care and preschool services for children from infancy to age 12. Pathfinder Kids Kampus is a Paths to QUALITY Provider and is the only licensed child care center in Huntington County. Pathfinder Kids Kampus can be found on the web at www.kidskampus.org and is a division of Pathfinder Services, a not-for-profit human and community development agency based in Huntington and serving Northeast Indiana.