KABOOM! Is a national nonprofit organization that’s mission is to end playspace inequality. For Good! You may be asking, what is playspace inequality? It is the idea that EVERY child should have access to a fun, safe place to play regardless of race, zip code or family income.
“We envision an America where every kid can get the play they need to thrive, regardless of race, zip code and family income. When we achieve playspace equity, kids will be able to play close to where they live and learn, and those playspaces will be high quality and built upon the desires of the community.”
KABOOM! Is focused on giving students, in areas that are experiencing a disinvestment, the opportunity to play and be a part of a community that cares. These are both fundamental to helping kids reach their full potential. To find a grant that best suits your school and community, click here.
For over two decades, KABOOM! has been involved in community builds that are made possible through working with devoted community members. Since their founding, they have built or improved 17,000+ playspaces, engaged more than 1.5 million community members, and brought joy to over 11 million kids. They offer a variety of different grants ranging from elementary level to teens.
KABOOM! currently has four open grants that can be applied for. These are:
- Build It With KABOOM!
- Play Everywhere Design Challenge
- Creative Play Grants
- Adventure Courses
Each of these grants is focused around a different thing and is targeting different areas in the United States. Below we have included these grants links and some information about each of the available grants. If you qualify, go to their website and apply today!
Description: Build it with KABOOM! pairs one of our dedicated funding partners with a community partner, that’s you, who then come together to plan and build a brand-new playground. Our community-built playgrounds generate a tangible, achievable win for your community, transforming your space into a great place to play for kids and families.
- Arizona: Phoenix
- California: Greater Los Angeles Area; Greater San Francisco Bay Area
- Colorado: Crowley County; East Colfax Corridor, Montrose County; Otero County; Rio Grande County
- Georgia: Greater Atlanta Area
- Illinois: Greater Chicago Area
- Maryland: Prince George County
- Minnesota: Twin Cities
- Texas: Dallas, Houston, Fort Worth
- Utah: Salt Lake City
- Washington D.C: Greater Washington D.C. Area (DMV)
Description: KABOOM! and the Built to Play initiative, supported by the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation, proudly present the Play Everywhere Design Challenge. This design challenge will award $1 million to communities building landmark playspaces that provide kids with equitable opportunities to play.
- Southeast Michigan counties: Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, St. Clair, Washtenaw and Wayne
- Western New York counties: Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans, Monroe and Wyoming
Description: Imagination Playground™ is an innovative design in play equipment that encourages creativity, communication, and collaboration in play. With a collection of custom-designed, oversized blue foam parts, Imagination Playground™ provides a changing array of elements that allow children to turn their playground into a space constantly built and re-built by their imagination.
- Demonstrate need for a Creative Play grant.
- Give evidence of available space and the ability to maintain the Imagination Playground™ in a Cart or Rigamajig®.
- Give anticipated impact that the grant will have on the community and increased play opportunities.
- Show demonstrated impact on low income areas and the number of children the grant will serve.
Description: This new type of playspace was developed in response to the demands of kids and communities looking to engage older kids and teenagers. Through our signature community-build model and with the leadership of our Project Managers, communities will design and build an amazing playspace aimed at kids and teens, aged 10 and older. Adventure course playspaces provide a fun, challenging option for physical activity.
- Serve youth from low-income population and demonstrate the need for engaging space for older kids.
- Engage older kids and teenagers, 13-years and older, in the planning process.
- Work with the community, with guidance from a dedicated KABOOM! Project Manager, to fundraise toward the cost of equipment.
- Own the land on which you wish to build, or have a long-term lease and get permission from the landowner to construct an adventure course.
- Demonstrate ability to recruit a team of parents, neighbors, teenagers and community members who are excited about serving on the planning committee for a six to eight week period, plus recruit approximately 100-200 community members to participate on Build Day.
- Complete any needed site preparation on at least 3,500 to 4,000 square feet in order to create a flat, dirt surface (e.g., removing old equipment or asphalt, etc.)
- Secure soil tests, utility checks, and build permits in a timely manner.
- Identify community resources to secure additional in-kind contributions such as breakfast and lunch for Build Week, tools, restroom facilities and a dumpster.
- Accept ownership and maintenance responsibilities for the playspace upon completion of project.
KABOOM! Grants are different from many traditional grants in that they are not on strict deadlines. Qualified communities apply and as the funding is provided, KABOOM! will reach out to the applicant that best fits. If your area is not currently on any of these grants, continue to check back periodically because locations and grant types are always changing! To see some of the nonprofits previous grants, click here!