Oakland County Parks and Recreation’s (OCPR) Recreation Assistance Partnership Program (RAPP) has been awarded the National Association of County Park and Recreation Officials’ (NACPRO) 2018 Park and Recreation Program Award.
The national award was presented July 15 at NACPRO’s Summer Meeting in Nashville, Tenn. The Parks and Recreation Award is given to recognize a unique or exceptional program, activity or event, which provides an outstanding example for others to follow. Nominations are judged on uniqueness, effectiveness in achieving program goals and public response.
Since its inception in 1982, RAPP has provided recreation yearly to more than 1 million Oakland County residents who might not otherwise have had access to recreation.
“The RAPP program is important to our local communities and to Oakland County Parks and Recreation,” Brandy Boyd, Chief of Recreation Programs and Services, said. “With this program we have supplemented day camp programs, special events, senior programs and so much more. We have also partnered with local municipalities and non-profit organizations to create new and lasting special events. We are so fortunate that the OCP Commission not only supports this program but also keeps encouraging staff to provide more recreation experiences to its residents.”
Through the RAPP program, grants are awarded in the form of OCPR mobile recreation program activities which include outreach programs, nature education and bus transportation to cities, villages and townships; community parks and recreation departments; schools; downtown development authorities; non-profit organizations; and underserved populations.
A RAPP grant provides up to two outreach programs such as Get Outdoors! Cache, Get Outdoors! Fish adventures and inflatables, one nature education plus one bus trip. One example was a trip to a Detroit Tigers baseball game for a group of children from Pontiac. The RAPP grant provided bus transportation for the 30-mile trip to the stadium in downtown Detroit, a city most had never been to and to an event they might not have had an opportunity to experience.
In 2017 a nature component was added to the grant programs. The requests for nature programs doubled from 20 to 40 this year.
The RAPP program ensures that recreational needs of the diverse citizen population throughout Oakland County are met.