On Tuesday, Oct. 26, more than 150 volunteers from UnitedHealthcare and New England Patriots Charitable Foundation, including Patriots players and their wives, will team up to build a playground at the Waltham Boys & Girls Club.
The project will give the Waltham organization its first playground since it was founded in 1938.
Construction of the 2130-square-foot playground is part of an ongoing collaboration between UnitedHealthcare and the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation to raise awareness of the benefits of exercise, nutrition and other aspects of healthy living.
Leading construction is KaBOOM!, a national nonprofit organization that has helped build more than 1,800 playgrounds in communities throughout the country. The design is based on drawings by Waltham Boys & Girls Club children.
“The new playground will give our members the opportunity to interact with their peers and help them develop both physically and socially,” said Jennifer Aldworth, executive director of the Waltham Boys & Girls Club. “Having a safe area for physical activity wouldn’t be possible without the support of UnitedHealthcare, the New England Patriots, KaBOOM! and other hard-working volunteers.”
The playground construction is the latest event in UnitedHealthcare’s national “Do Good. Live Well.” initiative – a collaboration with the Entertainment Industry Foundation’s iParticipate campaign to inspire a new level of service and volunteerism in America. Additional events in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta and Minneapolis have given a chance for UnitedHealthcare employees to volunteer alongside local organizations and contribute meaningfully to their communities.
“We value our partnership with UnitedHealthcare because it focuses on improving the lives of New England youth and their families,” said Josh Kraft, president of the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation. “Physical activity at a young age is key to adopting a long-term healthy lifestyle. This playground has the potential to truly enrich the lives of the children at the Waltham Boys & Girls Club.”
“As part of our commitment to giving back to the communities where we live and work, we are excited to partner with the Patriots, the Boys & Girls Club and others to build a playground for the children of Waltham,” said Larry Renfro, executive vice president and CEO of UnitedHealth Group’s Public and Senior Markets Group. “Serving others can be a powerful force for improving people’s as well as our communities’ own well-being. More and more evidence suggests volunteering gives greater meaning to life, increases healthy behaviors and decreases stress and tension.”
According to a recent survey released by UnitedHealthcare and VolunteerMatch, four in 10 Americans have volunteered in the past year. Eighty-four percent of survey respondents agreed that volunteering improves physical health, and 95 percent agreed that volunteering improves emotional health.
For more information about the benefits of volunteering and to find local opportunities to get involved, visit www.DoGoodLiveWell.org. Follow @DoGoodLiveWell on Twitter or “like” Do Good. Live Well. on Facebook.
UnitedHealthcare also supports YMCA programs dedicated to obesity prevention for children, families and adults at risk of developing chronic diseases. The company provides UnitedHealth HEROES grants in collaboration with Youth Service America for service-learning projects to engage youth as “First Responders” in the fight against childhood obesity. The company’s 2009 Social Responsibility Report, “Healthy Living. Healthy Communities.” is viewable here.
About the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation
The New England Patriots Charitable Foundation is the 501(c)(3) non-profit entity created by the Kraft family to support charitable and philanthropic agencies throughout New England. This support comes in the form of direct grants, and the donation of signed memorabilia to a variety of charitable causes, and from Patriots players who offer their direct support by appearing at charity functions throughout the year. Robert Kraft established the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation when he purchased the team in 1994 as a way for the organization to give back to the communities it calls home. The Foundation’s primary goal is to support programs that aid the youth and families of New England while underscoring the Kraft family’s deep commitment to philanthropic activities in the community. Over the past 16 years, the Foundation has made millions of dollars in donations to thousands of non-profit organizations throughout New England and has partnered with numerous community groups, including the Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston, the United Way, the Greater Boston Food Bank and a host of other New England charities. The Foundation actively supports non-profit groups focusing on health, education, youth fitness and community enrichment while also implementing its own programs in those areas of focus. In 2010, the Foundation is raising cancer awareness among Patriots fans through its “Kick Cancer” initiative.
About the Waltham Boys & Girls Club
Since its founding in 1938, the Waltham Boys & Girls Club has been recognized as a community leader in providing positive programs for youth, with a special emphasis on serving disadvantaged youth. The Club offers program opportunities in Sports, Social Recreation, Aquatics, Arts, Licensed After-School Program, Summer Camp and Summer Food Programs. The Waltham Boys & Girls Club is located at 20 Exchange St., Waltham, MA 02451. For additional information, please visit our website www.walthambgc.org.
About UnitedHealth Group
UnitedHealth Group is a diversified health and well-being company dedicated to making health care work better. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minn., UnitedHealth Group offers a broad spectrum of products and services through six operating businesses: UnitedHealthcare Employer & Individual, UnitedHealthcare Medicare & Retirement, UnitedHealthcare Community & State, OptumHealth, Ingenix and Prescription Solutions. Through its family of businesses, UnitedHealth Group serves more than 75 million individuals worldwide. Visit www.unitedhealthgroup.com for more information.