Benefits of Parks & Recreation

The Waynesville Parks & Recreation Department models their basis with the three pillars of the National Parks & Recreation Association (NRPA):

Health & Wellness

Local park and recreation agencies provide crucial health and wellness opportunities for all populations in communities across the country. As America continues to face serious health issues including rising rates of chronic disease, an increased prevalence of sedentary lifestyles and poor nutrition habits, parks and recreation offer an affordable and accessible solution.

NRPA works with local park and recreation agencies to provide tools, resources and technical assistance to improve access to healthy foods and increase opportunities for people to be physically active in their communities. Our areas of focus include ensuring that all people have safe access to quality park and recreation facilities and programming; promoting healthy eating and physical activity standards; expanding access to evidence-based health prevention programs; connecting parks and the health community, and supporting programs and policies that eliminate health disparities.

Conservation

Local park and recreation agencies play a vital role in the protection of our environment through green infrastructure, conservation of public lands, providing wildlife habitat and more. In a world where people are increasingly disconnected to nature, local parks also are essential in creating environmental stewards who will advocate for and protect our most precious public resources – our land, water, trees, open spaces and wildlife. 

NRPA works with local park and recreation agencies to provide tools, resources and technical assistance to better connect communities to nature and enhance sustainability through conservation practices within parks. Our areas of focus include promoting sustainable practices including green infrastructure and other strategies that address the effects of climate change, preserving wildlife, growing a next generation of environmental stewards, and supporting programs and policies that encourage a commitment to conservation.

Social Equity  

True to the very philosophy of public parks and recreation is the idea that all people – no matter the color of their skin, age, income level or ability – have access to programs, facilities, places and spaces that make their lives and communities great. Parks and recreation truly build communities – communities for all.

NRPA works with local park and recreation agencies to provide tools, resources, and technical assistance to ensure all people have access and are meaningfully involved in the development and use of park and recreation programs and spaces. Our areas of focus include ensuring all people have safe access to quality park and recreation facilities and programming, expanding access to meal programs for children, investing in park improvement projects for communities that need it most, and supporting programs and policies that protect our most vulnerable communities from environmental and health hazards.