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RTIPs Meet-up: Increasing Park-Based Physical Activity Through Community Engagement

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I am delighted that our intervention, Increasing Park-Based Physical Activity Through Community Engagement has been added to RTIPs! The intervention targets park users and local community residents who have not used the park.

Our program’s goal was to increase the number of people using parks and their level of physical activity while using the parks. Grounded in community-based participatory research principles, the program takes place within parks that have an existing park advisory board (PAB).  The PABs consist of both local residents and a park director.

A manual guides the five key phases of the program:

  • Community engagement and planning.
  • Baseline park assessment.
  • Data interpretation and intervention development. After the baseline assessment, the park director and PAB meet several times to discuss the findings of the assessment and develop park-specific interventions.
  • Intervention implementation:
    •  Parks purchase materials for marketing and promotion and/or for programming (in the study reviewed for this summary, each park received $4,000).
    • Marketing and promotional materials include signage; bulletin boards; and park-branded water bottles, bags, and key chains.
    • Investing in park programming includes purchasing new sports equipment (e.g., basketballs, weights) and hiring instructors to teach physical activity classes.
  • Follow-up park assessment.

Has your organization or coalition engaged with park advisory boards to increase the use of neighborhood parks? I would be happy to discuss how our intervention could be adapted in a variety of settings.


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