NRPA Announces Parks for Inclusion

September 25, 2017
Allison Hoit

Media Contact:
Heather Williams

For Immediate Release

NRPA Announces Parks for Inclusion Partnership with Lakeshore Foundation, NCHPAD

Ashburn, Va. (Sept. 26, 2017) – The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) is pleased to announce a partnership with Lakeshore Foundation and the National Center for Health, Physical Activity and Disability (NCHPAD) as part of the Parks for Inclusion initiative.

Parks for Inclusion is NRPA’s formal pledge to the Partnership for Inclusive Health’s Commit to Inclusion campaign. Commit to Inclusion is a global campaign designed by the Partnership for Inclusive Health “to end the exclusion of people with disability from physical activity and all associated areas.” NRPA’s pledge, Parks for Inclusion, is to ensure that all people have access to the benefits of local parks and recreation. The formal partnership with Lakeshore Foundation and NCHPAD will bring the groups together to work to expand physical and cognitive disability inclusion across the field of parks and recreation. With supports from Lakeshore Foundation and NCHPAD, NRPA will work to prioritize inclusion in current initiatives and programs; provide resources and technical assistance to local park and recreation agencies; and develop metrics, collect impacts and disseminate findings to scale best practices across the field of parks and recreation.

“We are pleased to partner with the National Recreation and Park Association on this inclusion initiative,” said Lakeshore president Jeff Underwood. “Lakeshore and NCHPAD are committed to using our expertise and resources to help remove barriers which prevent people with disabilities from taking full advantage of opportunities in parks and recreation programs. Our hope is that by helping to facilitate better access, people will be more inclined to be physically active which leads to a more healthy and independent lifestyle.”


“NRPA is proud to partner with the Lakeshore Foundation and NCHPAD on this new initiative,” said Barbara Tulipane, CAE, NRPA president and CEO. “Our goal is to ensure everyone — regardless of income, race or ability — is able to enjoy the benefits that parks and recreation provide.”

Parks for Inclusion will officially launch during NRPA’s annual conference, Sept. 26-28, in New Orleans. Leading up to the launch, a survey was distributed to NRPA membership to assess the ways in which inclusive practices are being introduced to park and recreation facilities, and what resources are needed to support the field. A full report will be released this fall showcasing the current landscape of inclusion in parks.

More information about Parks for Inclusion, the partnership with Lakeshore and NCHPAD, and resources supporting inclusivity can be found at


About The National Recreation and Park Association
The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to ensuring that all Americans have access to parks and recreation for health, conservation and social equity. Through its network of 60,000 recreation and park professionals and advocates, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy and active lifestyles, conservation initiatives and equitable access to parks and public space. For more information, visit For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit

About Lakeshore Foundation and NCHPAD

Lakeshore Foundation’s activity, research and advocacy initiatives annually serve thousands of children and adults with physical disabilities and chronic health conditions. Lakeshore is home to the CDC-funded National Center on Health, Physical Activity and Disability (NCHPAD). NCHPAD works to create health equity for people with disability by providing assistance in the form of web-based materials and health communication endeavors. For more information, visit and