Youth input yields My Denver Card

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4/1/2013  RssIcon

The world would probably be a better place if we only listened more often to our children. Lucky for us, Councilman Chris Nevitt did just that.

Two years ago, when now 12-year-old Maggie Trout approached the District 7 representative with her idea to give Denver kids single-card access to Denver services and programs, Nevitt took note. And we announced the creation of the My Denver Card at my first State of the City address July of last year.

This week, thanks to Denver voters’ support of ballot Measure 2A, Maggie joined us at Washington Park Recreation Center to launch this card that gives all Denver students ages 5-18 free access to the city’s recreation centers and outdoor pools and acts as a library card.

I am thankful for Maggie because I could not think of a more worthwhile effort than giving our children the keys to learning and staying active. I’m thankful for Councilman Nevitt for listening to his constituents, even the youngest among them. And I’m grateful for voters who recognized the value in investing in our children — in our future — and in our city.

Last summer, I promised that if Measure 2A passed, Denver would eliminate its budget deficit, restore essential services and put our entire city on a path to full economic recovery. We are coming out of the Great Recession poised to compete on the global stage, starting right here with our children and our families.

Thanks to Measure 2A, we have already launched the first round of expanded hours for the Denver Public Library. Ultimately, 21 of DPL’s 25 locations will expand their hours, meaning every branch will be open a minimum of six days per week, giving our children and families 40 percent more time for reading, homework and story time.

It is incumbent upon the city, along with its partners, to provide our kids in every neighborhood access to the resources they need to lead healthy, productive lives. Measure 2A has allowed us to deliver a smart, 21st-century city that is built on a solid financial foundation with good jobs, healthy children, accessible libraries and safe streets.

We have worked hard to make sure the My Denver Card is available as the summer months approach. With enhanced programming and services at our rec centers, our hope is to provide Denver’s children with ample activities to keep them safe and healthy after school and during spring and summer breaks.

Parents, all you have to do is sign up your kids at your local rec center.

And we are not done yet. We will continue to push, pull and cajole our partners throughout the city to help us expand the access that the My Denver Card provides.

Stay tuned!

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