In the uncertain political climate we’ve all been facing, public organizations in particular are left wondering what the most effective approach is to advocate for their missions. The good news? Americans’ support of local parks and recreation is strong according to an October report from the National Parks and Recreation Association:
“The report highlights NRPA’s 2016 Americans’ Engagement with Parks Survey that found the majority of Americans agree parks and recreation are important services delivered by local government — offering that funding for local parks and recreation agencies should be increased.”1
The survey results go on to explain:
- Americans on average visit their local park and recreation facilities approximately 29 times a year with millennials and parents frequenting parks the most
- Nine in 10 Americans agree that parks and recreation are important services delivered by their local government
- Three in four Americans agree that NRPA’s three pillars of Conservation, Health and Wellness, and Social Equity represent what they see as priorities for their local park and recreation agency
- Seven in 10 Americans say they are more likely to vote for local politicians who make park and recreation funding a priority
- Three-quarters of Americans support increased local government spending for park and recreation agencies with solid support for a nearly 30 percent local government funding increase for parks and recreation
- Increased funding! Sentiment is behind you and carries a willingness to support – and fund – your important work. If you’re looking for some direction on how to actively advocate for your department, NRPA has fact sheets and toolkits located on their advocacy resource center, as well as a Fund Your Park membership benefit that can help get you started generating support.
Long story short, there is always the opportunity to generate support for your work. And despite a very tumultuous time in our country, the American people value your services and support you. Advocate now for your organization and you’ll see growth for years to come.