Crim helping make park improvements

FLINT — The Crim Fitness Foundation (Crim) is helping Flint youth and families have great places for play.

Through the Healthy Kids, Healthy Communities (HKHC) initiative, facilitated by the Crim, the organization is partnering with residents and community groups to make grant-funded improvements to Max Brandon and Brennan Parks.

The HKHC initiative is in its third year and has emphasized working with residents to create support and implement strategic planning for Max Brandon and Brennan parks. Both the Friends of Max Brandon Park and the Southside Neighborhood collaborative worked diligently to develop plans that include parks as an important asset.

Based on resident input and these community plans, the Crim was able to help make some park improvements through funding from the Funding Exchange, Inc with monies from its Applewood Fund, a donor advised fund established by Ruth Mott.

This week residents will observe work being done at Brennan Park to revitalize the baseball diamond that includes: new surfacing material to the infield and the addition of new bases, bleachers, player benches, and trash cans. Also taking place over the next two weeks will be repairs to the out-of-date and hazardous fencing and bollards surrounding the perimeter of Max Brandon Park.

The Crim is excited to play a role to help implement action steps that will result in safer places for youth and families to play. “We appreciate the support of the block clubs surrounding Max Brandon Park in helping us restore the park for special events during the year,” said Alonzo Laster, a member of the Friends of Max Brandon Park.

These types of projects take collaboration among many groups. Barbara Griffith-Wilson, a member of the Southside Neighborhood organization, said “The improvements to the baseball diamond at Brennan Park are the result of what can happen when the community and non-profits like the Crim Fitness Foundation work together to improve the community and increase awareness of the many things that are offered at parks.

This baseball diamond will bring the youth and adults of the community together for good, old fashion fun. The community thanks the Crim, the Funding Exchange and Ruth Mott Foundation for their continued support of the Flint community.”

In 2010 the Crim Fitness Foundation was awarded a $360,000 grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) to fight childhood obesity by improving parks and increasing opportunities for youth and families to be physically active in Flint.

Based on a rigorous selection process that drew more than 500 proposals from across the country, Flint was one of 41 sites selected for the RWJF Healthy Kids, Healthy Communities initiative.

Details: Call 810-235-7801 or e-mail G.G.

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