LONG BEACH, Miss. (WHLT) – On Tuesday, the Children’s Center for Communication and Development cut the ribbon on its brand-new playground on the University of Southern Mississippi’s (USM) Gulf Park Campus in Long Beach. It was made possible by a gift from the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation through the USM Foundation.
“We are incredibly grateful to the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation for their partnership in the construction of this playground and outdoor therapy space,” said Sarah Myers, Director at The Children’s Center. “The grant award totaled $323,540 and the goals of the grant project were to target therapeutic milestones like peer-to-peer social interaction and active movement, including age-appropriate play skills. We worked closely with the Foundation and playground designer, Moonshot Recreation with Landscape Structures, to design a space that would encourage children to work on these skills through the act of outdoor play.”
Those in attendance got to see these skills being targeted in person as children from The Children’s Center walked along the balance beam, raced each other on the bike track, took turns pushing buttons and pulling levers on the water feature, and interacted with one another on the two-person swing.