July Partner of the Month: Surprise Parks and Recreation (SP&R)

July is Park and Recreation Month (#WhereCommunityGrows) which provides an opportunity to celebrate the “more than 160,000 full-time park and recreation professionals — along with hundreds of thousands of part-time and seasonal workers and volunteers — that maintain our country’s local, state and community parks.”

PCA values the impact Park and Recreation programs have on youth and to celebrate Park and Recreation Month we are putting a spotlight on our partnership with Surprise Parks and Recreation (SP&R).

The mission of SP&R is to enrich and complement the lives of Surprise residents through stewardship of their resources while providing responsive programs which promote and prioritize diversity, cultural, neighborhood, family, education, recreation and wellness opportunities.

Our work with SP&R certainly supports their commitment to the community. They have worked hard to ensure their youth sports programs deliver a positive and inclusive experience for all youth and have included PCA training and resources across their programming:

  • PCA trainings happen prior to all coach meetings
  • PCA resources are included in emails sent to coaches and in turn coaches are encouraged to share the content with parents
  • PCA has become a part of the sponsorship program, where money from sponsorships helps pay for trainings

Awareness of PCA is strong across youth programs, and they see PCA concepts utilized consistently, especially during games.  “We hear coaches telling players to ‘flush it’ when they make a mistake, or simply ‘take a deep breath’”, says Jason Bond, Recreation Manager Adult and Youth programming SP&R. “Overall I believe we have seen coaches’ behavior improve due to our partnership with PCA”.

A key to the partnership’s success is the belief SP&R has in PCA.  “PCA is in constant communication with us.  They are always available for support, and we really leverage every resource they provide to ensure we are doing everything to be the right organization out here for youth. When we work with PCA trainers, they’re passionate and very enthusiastic.  They want to help, and they share their life experiences with our coaches.  That really goes a long way helping our first time coaches and even those who have been coaching 10 years plus.”

PCA has partnered with SP&R since 2017 and we host about 20 workshops a year depending on the number  of sports and teams that come out. PCA is proud of the culture SP&R has built and they are an example we cite when we look to work with other parks and recreations across the country.

To learn more about what it means to partner with PCA, click here