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New resource supports active, intergenerational play

Be Fit For Life arranged for 50 intergenerational play kits to be made available through Chinook Arch Regional Library System member libraries, including Fort Macleod.

Building relationships and connections across generations has a wide variety of benefits for both children and older adults.

One of the easiest and most effective ways to build these relationships is through play.

This is why Be Fit For Life worked to create 50 intergenerational play kits and asked Chinook Arch Regional Library System to assist with distributing the kits throughout southwestern Alberta.

The kits include Move and Play Together, a booklet that is designed to support active play between an older adult and a child.

It contains many activities that help to develop physical literacy while contributing to injury prevention and the equipment required is low cost or easy to find at home.

Also included in each of the kits will be scarves, a beach ball, foam dice, two additional Be Fit For Life booklets, and a “ring the stick” craft.

“These kits were created with support from the Alberta Community Injury Control Fund to support physical literacy and injury prevention through active play,” said Diane Gallagher, project co-ordinator at Be Fit For Life. “They’re ideal for building connections between young children and their grandparents, or other older adults.”

Be Fit For Life and Chinook Arch have partnered on other physical literacy projects in the past, most notably the Yoga in the Library initiative that brought weekly yoga classes to rural communities for a six-week period.

Thanks to the success of the past projects it was decided that libraries within the Chinook Arch system would distribute the kits within their communities.

“Over the past two years Chinook Arch has been running senior and intergenerational programming within our member libraries and have seen the benefits of these connections firsthand,” Chinook Arch manager of partnerships and community development Lisa Weekes said. “When Be Fit For Life approached us we were happy to help provide yet another opportunity for active, intergenerational play within our communities.”

The libraries receiving these kits are well-positioned to distribute them among their communities thanks to their existing relationships.

Set to receive the kits are the libraries located in: Barnwell, Champion, Claresholm, Coaldale, Crowsnest Pass, Fort Macleod, Glenwood, Milo, Nanton, Pincher Creek, and Taber.

Move and Play Together is also available as a free download: http://befitforlife.ca/resources/move-play-together.

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