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PLANO, Texas -- Dr. Pepper Snapple Group (DPS) is taking aim at children’s health by teaming with KaBOOM! With its Let’s Play initiative, locally based DPS makes a $15-million, three-year commitment to the national nonprofit that works to ensure every child has a place to play within walking distance. The partnership’s goal is to build or fix up 2,000 playgrounds by the end of 2013.
"We recognize that the key to healthy living is managing calories in and calories out. Let’s Play is an important step in helping families achieve that balance," explained Larry D. Young, president and chief executive officer of DPS. "By extending our existing partnership with KaBOOM!, Let’s Play will provide the tools, places and inspiration to help communities increase physical activity."
Let’s Play is keeping with the company’s goal to promote fit and active lifestyles, an important element in DPS’s corporate philanthropy, ACTION Nation. DPS will offer Let’s Play grants through KaBOOM! to help communities build new playgrounds, update existing ones or keep playgrounds open longer. DPS and employee volunteers will build 40 of those new playgrounds, the company said.
In the past two years, DPS has partnered with KaBOOM to build 13 new playgrounds, the most recent in Victorville, Calif. DPS’s Mott’s brand also sponsored the second annual KaBOOM! Play Day in September.
"KaBOOM! envisions a great place to play within walking distance for every child in America, and this partnership will certainly help us achieve that goal," said Darell Hammond, chief executive officer and co-founder of the nonprofit. "Dr. Pepper Snapple Group recognized the importance of play for the health of children years ago and we are excited to continue our relationship with them into 2013."
Let’s Play is not the company’s only initiative aimed toward improved health. DPS has set a goal that at least 50 percent of products in its innovation pipeline will be health and wellness focused by 2015. In addition, it will join with other beverage industry leaders and the American Beverage Association in placing easy to read calorie information on the front of all beverage packages and company-owned vending machines, as well as on or adjacent to company-owned fountain equipment.