The Ponchatoula Jaycees welcome and encourage all Ponchatoula Chamber of Commerce members to join us tonight at our building in Jaycee Park (325 Beechwood Dr,) from 5:30-700 for a very special After-Hours event. We will be cooking gumbo for all our guests to enjoy this evening!
In addition to the usual eating, socializing, and networking that this event offers, the Jaycees will also be giving a short presentation tonight on the progress of the All Inclusive Playground coming soon to our Ponchatoula Community. We are very excited to update the community on where we are and where we are headed. We will be unveiling the different levels of sponsorship and donation opportunities available to businesses and individuals who may be interested in helping us help make this dream a reality for the children.
Play is a critical part of the social, emotional, cognitive and physical development of every child. Unfortunately, the vast majority of playgrounds deny children with disabilities and critical illnesses the opportunity for exercise, entertainment, and social interactions which other children enjoy. In fact, only a small percentage of fully accessible playgrounds exist within our nation and these are insufficient to serve 43 million Americans with disabilities. An Inclusive Playground is specifically designed to remove physical and social barriers so ALL children, with and without disabilities and/or critical illnesses, can play side by side with their peers and families.
We identified the need for an all-needs accessible playground/park in Tangipahoa Parish, almost four years ago when a citizen of our community reached out to one of our members regarding the absence of a sensory park in our parish. Her daughter is Autistic and she reminded us of the many other children in our community who also have special needs, and who could benefit from an all-inclusive type park. She contacted this Jaycees member because she was familiar with our organization’s passion and initiative to solve local challenges. This was the spark that lit the fire in our chapter’s members, and set the wheels in motion to making this vision a reality for Ponchatoula.
We have been working hard ever since to bring this goal to fruition. With the help of our community's generous support, we know we can reach this goal faster. Together, we can enable ALL children and caregivers of all abilities in our community the opportunity to experience the joys and benefits of play right here in Ponchatoula. This playground will truly impact ten thousand people each year.
We look forward to visiting with all of our fellow Chamber of Commerce members this evening! Come hungry!