|Mayor Hancock Announces Free Access to Recreation Centers for more than 90,000 Denver Kids
DENVER – Mayor Michael B. Hancock today announced that more than 90,000 Denver students now have free, year-round access to the city’s 26 recreation centers and 29 pools with the MY Denver Card.
The Mayor announced the creation of the MY Denver Card at his first State of the City address last July. Today, thanks to Denver voters’ overwhelming support of ballot Measure 2A, the city is able to expand programming at the city’s recreation centers to support all Denver students ages 5 to 18.
“It is incumbent upon the city and its partners to provide our kids in every neighborhood access to the resources they need to lead healthy, productive lives,” Mayor Hancock said. “This program is the first of its kind in Denver to give our children free and open access to healthy activities after school and during spring and summer breaks. We are thankful to Denver voters for their support of Measure 2A, which made this possible.”
Mayor Hancock was joined by the innovative 12-year-old Maggie Trout, who approached District 7 City Councilman Chris Nevitt in 2011 with the idea to provide Denver kids with single card access to Denver services and programs.
“Mayor Hancock’s vision for Denver is ‘a world-class city where everyone matters,’” Councilman Nevitt said. “But this project shows that his vision runs in both directions: ‘everyone matters to make Denver a world-class city.’ A smart 12-year old with a good idea is helping us make Denver better for everyone.”
The Mayor presented Maggie with a free lifetime membership to the City and County of Denver recreation centers at the event today at Washington Park Recreation Center.
Presently, the MY Denver Card will act as a recreation center pass and a Denver Public Library card. The Mayor and his administration will continue to work with city partners to increase the scope of services that the MY Denver Card will encompass beyond the initial free access, expanded recreation center programming and pool access.
“We have come out of the Great Recession poised to compete on the global stage, and we’re starting right here with our children and our families,” the Mayor said. “I am thankful for Maggie because I cannot 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 the voters who recognized the value in investing in our children – in our future – and in our city.”
Parents may take their children to any of the 26 recreation centers throughout the city to fill out the appropriate paperwork and receive a MY Denver Card. In addition, UnitedHealthcare of Colorado will serve as the title sponsor of the MY Denver Card program, working with the city to help build awareness of the program, generate additional youth-focused programming at recreation centers and ensure that registration information is distributed citywide.
“Through this program, Denver is showing its commitment to promoting physical activity and wellness to children and teaching youth key lessons that will help them be healthy for a lifetime,” said Beth Soberg, president and CEO of UnitedHealthcare of Colorado. “UnitedHealthcare is grateful for the opportunity to work with parents, schools and our local community in Colorado to encourage kids to lead healthier lives, and we believe the MY Denver Card program will increase the number of kids who engage in physical activity.”
The MY Denver Card release comes on the heels of the Denver Public Library’s announcement that, by the end of April, the Library will have increased hours by 40 percent thanks to additional 2A funding. The expanded library hours are part of the significant improvements Measure 2A, passed in 2012, will have on every Denver neighborhood.
About Measure 2A
Thanks to Denver voters’ overwhelming support of Measure 2A in 2012, the city is equipped to eliminate its budget deficit, restore essential services and move Denver forward. The city’s plan to Deliver Denver's Future is made possible by these critical investments, and will allow Denver 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.
The passage of Measure 2A allows the city to catch up on childcare, after-school and recreational programs for our children, repave 300 lane miles of city streets, and increase the maintenance and upkeep of our parks. It allows Denver to hire 100 new police officers and firefighters.
The city is working to double Denver’s property tax credit for low-income seniors and people with disabilities. Denver is also working to attract new businesses as well as keep and expand companies already located in the city.
Measure 2A revenues are publicly dedicated to these efforts. To deliver on the Hancock administration’s promise to be responsible, accountable and transparent with every dollar, the Chief Financial Officer will provide detailed annual reports to the Mayor’s Office, the City Council and City Auditor as well as an e-newsletter to keep Denverites fully informed.
At the same time, the city is delivering on a balanced fiscal strategy to find efficiencies, eliminate redundancies and grow Denver’s economy.
CLICK HERE for more information about the city’s plan to Deliver Denver’s Future.