For Immediate Release
Regional Parks’ Caminitos Al Parque program earns industry recognition
Program introduces Spanish-speaking families to nature
Sonoma County, CA | July 25, 2022
Sonoma County Regional Parks has garnered state and national recognition for its groundbreaking Caminitos Al Parque program, which introduces low-income Latinx families with preschool-aged children to the wonders of nature.
This innovative in-the-field experience is led entirely in Spanish by Regional Parks staff.
The program earned the Creating Community award from the California Park & Recreation Society and the National Association of County Parks and Recreation’s Park and Recreation Program for communities of a similar size to Sonoma County.
“We’re honored these prestigious industry organizations recognize the importance of this program and its outreach to our Latinx community,” said Sonoma County Regional Parks Director Bert Whitaker. “Our goal is to share the value of the outdoors for promoting healthy, inquisitive child development, strong family connections and better mental and physical health.”
Caminitos Al Parque was born from a creative collaboration with the nonprofit Community Action Partnership of Sonoma County (CAP). All participants in Caminitos are referred from CAP’s Pasitos playgroups, an educational playgroup created for Spanish-speaking parents and their 3- to 4-year-olds who are not able to attend preschool. For more information about CAP and its playgroups, visit CapSonoma.org.
“The relationship with Community Action Partnership allows us to efficiently reach a large number of families over just a few weeks,” said Sandi Funke, Sonoma County Regional Parks program manager. “We hope that families will see our parks as central to their health and well-being and will, ultimately, become frequent users and advocates for our open spaces.”
Rocio Monter, CAP’s community based services manager, said, “Community Action Partnership is extremely grateful to partner with Sonoma County Regional Parks on the Caminitos Al Parque program. Caminitos Al Parque and Park’s staff have helped our families connect to nature. This connection has helped children and their adult caregivers learn new ways to support physical and mental health, all while enjoying the beauty of Sonoma County parks! Congratulations on these honors.”
For more information about Regional Parks and other outreach programs and activities, visit SonomaCountyParks.org.
Editors: For high-resolution photos, please visit https://flic.kr/s/aHBqjzYfqQ.
Sonoma County Regional Parks preserves irreplaceable natural and cultural resources, and offers opportunities for recreation and education that enhance the quality of life and well-being of Sonoma County's residents and visitors. Learn more at SonomaCountyParks.org.