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We partner with transitional housing and emergency shelters and community spaces across the city, where we create safe and fun play spaces at the shelters where the children live. Weekly volunteers dedicate their time, serving as playmates and mentors to children from 6 months to 12 years old. Learn more.

News & Notes

As we head into 2023, Playtime celebrates 20 years of ensuring children have access to the healing power of play, regardless of their housing status. Can you believe it?  

If you have been with us from the start, you will remember an organization assembled with a small-but-mighty band of volunteers ready to serve. Through the years, our volunteer numbers have grown, staff were brought on, and programs were added and adapted, all to expand our reach and impact. We’ve weathered the changing landscapes of family homelessness, the ongoing pandemic, and systemic injustices that create barriers to a family’s safety and stability. Though the world around us will continue to shift and change, as we look ahead to our 20th year, one thing remains the same: our commitment to play and to our families. We know that play is essential in developing strong, resilient, self-assured kids. In 2023, we will focus on maintaining our excellent play programs, as well as helping our children and families achieve success beyond the shelter.  

Playtime aims to create an inclusive environment for all children, no matter their developmental stage or special needs. Staff and volunteers were and are committed to ensuring Thomas, and other children like him, are able and comfortable participating in all activities in the playroom. We know that play helps children understand the world around them and heals them from stress, anxiety, and trauma. We also know that play allows children to explore new themes, express different emotions, problem-solve, develop social skills, and ignite creativity.  

After almost four years at Playtime, leaving is bittersweet, and I am overcome by a sense of gratitude. I have had the honor of watching the Playtime community—YOU, Playtime’s staff and volunteers, our board, partners across the region—come together and ensure children experiencing homelessness and housing insecurity continue to be served under the most extreme circumstances. The network of caring individuals, in all their various work, family, and neighborhood groups, is what makes Playtime possible. Thank you for your inspiring generosity.