In celebration of its 25 years in Vietnam, BASF is launching an initiative with social enterprise Think Playgrounds to donate four public playgrounds to the children and local communities.
|BASF today handed over the first playground in Ho Chi Minh City's Go Vap district |
BASF today handed over a 300 square metre playground in Ho Chi Minh City’s Go Vap district. In total, the initiative will provide over 12,000 children with a more appealing and safe learning environment. The four high-quality playground facilities are designed to promote a sense of exploration, inspire creativity, and develop different skills among the kids.
The playground facilities at Provincial Pediatric Hospital, Yen Bai province were completed in July, benefitting over 10,000 children. Meanwhile, another playground in Ward 15, Go Vap district will be completed in August, benefitting 300 kids, including 20 with special needs. The playground in Hiep Phuoc commune, Nha Be district will also be in August, benefitting 2,000 kids, including 20 with disabilities. The fourth playground in Binh Minh School for children with special needs in Dong Anh district, Hanoi supports about 70 students with disabilities (including autism, hearing and visual impairments), which is slated to be completed in September.
The two sites in Go Vap district and Nha Be district are both located in the outskirts of Ho Chi Minh City where access to high-quality playgrounds and entertainment facilities is a challenge for many families, especially immigrants working for nearby industrial parks. The two sites will be transformed into facilities that help the children learn through play, hence improving their development as well as living conditions.
The other two facilities, housed inside Hanoi’s Binh Minh School for children with special needs and Yen Bai Provincial Pediatric Hospital, will provide outdoor toys and play areas to help children recover from illness and develop physical and cognitive skills.
|The playgrounds aim to cultivate creativity and a sense of exploration through play and interaction with nature |
The four playgrounds are built with child-friendly materials including wood, rope, and recycled materials, such as old tires. The purpose is to provide the young generation an opportunity to better interact with nature and to build a habit of giving a second life to recyclable materials in their daily life. For Binh Minh School, the playground is equipped with a protective flooring system that contains a special grade of Expanded Thermoplastic Polyurethane (E-TPU), Infinergy® SP from BASF. It provides high rebound performance and excellent impact absorption for students’ joints while lowering risks of exercise-related injuries.
Play is essential in early childhood development and children are encouraged to explore outdoor play. However, the rapid urbanisation of big cities in Vietnam is leading to reductions in public space and shortages of playgrounds. The lack of public areas as well as the poor condition of the existing facilities would hinder public health and children's mental and physical development.
“At BASF in Vietnam, we focus our corporate citizenship activities on providing quality education. Through partnering with Think Playgrounds, we want to revitalise public spaces and make safe and high-quality play facilities and environment more accessible to every kid, especially the underprivileged children,” says Tanachart Ralsiripong‚ managing director of BASF Vietnam. “Children’s wellbeing can be improved with physical, sensory, and social play experience. This initiative is a meaningful way to celebrate our 25th anniversary in Vietnam and underlines our commitment to helping the country meet its sustainable development goals.”
The representative of Think Playgrounds, Nguyen Tieu Quoc Dat (co-founder and vice director), shared: “Think Playgrounds is a social enterprise with a mission to improve the friendly public spaces for children and the community in urban areas. Go Vap playground is our first project in Ho Chi Minh City, implemented in collaboration with local organisation SDRC and the Fatherland Front of Ward 15, Go Vap district, and sponsored by BASF. The playground is a group effort of the local community and BASF volunteers. We hope that the small-scale community playground model, which includes the contribution of sponsors, authorities, volunteers, and the community, will spread to all other areas of Ho Chi Minh City in order to effectively meet children's daily need for free play.”
Apart from the collaborative playground donation initiative, BASF Vietnam has been active in multiple community projects. For instance, BASF has partnered with Saigon Children’s Charity to renovate four schools by offering enhanced facilities and improving hygienic and safe conditions. Moreover, BASF has provided scholarships to disadvantaged university students for their four years of studies and holds the interactive education programme BASF Kids’ Lab on an annual basis for primary school students. The company also works with Nippon Paint to offer paint sponsorship to redecorate school areas in the Mekong Delta.
|Four facilities in Hanoi, Yen Bai, and Ho Chi Minh City will use child-friendly and recyclable materials |
|The playground's design involves the group effort of the local community and BASF volunteers. |