Pogo Park is an amazing organization that really cares about the children and the surrounding community. I took my kids to Elm Playlot, and my two kids had so much fun! I recommend you bring your kids too.
I live in Richmond and have seen first hand what this organization is doing for the community. Pogo Park gives the Iron Triangle community a voice in how they want their own community to look and feel.
Pogo Park is a great example of what community involvement should look like. The Iron Triangle community trusts Pogo Park's mission and goals. Run by the community and for the community!
This is a wonderful organization that provides families with beautiful and interesting spaces to feel safe and enjoy being outside. Pogo Park has become a framework for other underserved communities.
Elm playlot has provided the Iron Triangle community with a safe space for children to play. I am so thankful for that Pogo Park has done for the community.
I love seeing Elm playlot when I drive through Richmond. The park is kept in amazing condition. My kids enjoy climbing on the play structures. I can't wait to come back once it reopens.
Pogo Park is such an inspiring organization. I love seeing children in the Iron Triangle neighborhood have the opportunity to play outside in a safe environment.
Pogo Park is an amazing organization! I've enjoyed watching how Pogo Park has positively impacted the community and provided spaces for children to have a safe place to play outside.
Such a great organization that is really making a difference in the community, and uses community involvement so that everyone is engaged in the decision making! Very impressive work, and they keep adding on new innovative ideas to the parks.
Pogo Park has been working deeply in the Iron Triangle community for so many years. The neighborhood has slowly but surely begun to change, based on the passion and commitment of local residents in the community. The two park projects and the Pogo Park Team are inspiring, and have laid the ground work for transformation from the bottom up.
Pogo Park is a very successful project that engages the community, put residents to work and converted an eyesore into a clean, safe space for families.
Pogo park is an inspiration for all those hoping to make a positive impact in their community. It is a grounds up effort that involves all community members. The success of this effort can be seen in the pride the entire community has in Pogo Park.
We are so impressed with the present accomplishments of the Pogo Park non-profit, and the plans they have for the future--they are literally transforming the City of Richmond CA in terms of the playgrounds, green spaces, even streets close to schools, turning them into safe and inspiring play and learning spaces for children and young people of the area. From the start Toody Mayer involved the community in the planning and development, first with Pogo Park itself. We visited the park one day, and talked to a grandfather who had lived his whole life in Richmond, watching his granddaughter playing joyfully on the climbing structures and he said "I'm so inspired; I never thought something like this could happen here". Many adults of the community participate in the programs and events and are uplifted, really proud of the place they live. We think Toody Mayer should inform others in other parts of the country on what is working so well in Richmond--this success should spread!
My Boys and I LOVE this Park!!! It's a safe place for the younger kids to run around and play, they ALL love the Zipline idea, the Ice Cream Man comes around often and that's an added bonus to being at the park, who doesn't LOVE ice cream at the park?? It's also enjoyable for adults and older kids as well, plenty of places to sit and relax or read and enjoy the weather. All and all its an AWESOME park!!!
Pogo Park is a great model for how to come together within a community for the betterment of all. Their success in Richmond's Iron Triangle community is evident with just one visit to Elm Playlot or the Greenway. Seeing and hearing children playing, happy and carefree, while parents relax, in a park that was only recently neglected and dangerous, says it all. The Pogo Park team (local residents) made this happen, literally, with their own hands and the benefits are felt throughout the neighborhood. Thank you Pogo Park!
Pogo Park is simply the best community organization I've seen in the 50+ years I have been around community based social change organizations. In the last 12 years, I've seen Pogo Parks' visionary and tenacious community people reclaim their local abandoned and drug-infested parks and make them vital, safe and creative spaces, where their kids and the entire community can thrive. They did it. The neighborhood did it. They never wavered from the belief that they best can design, build and staff parks and that, only then, can the parks become vital community hubs. Pogo Park parks embody their work and prove that neighbors have the tools and smarts to create great things when empowered to do so.
I love the integrity behind this company and all its employees! They are very impressive and lovely. Thanks for making Richmond feel like an actual community and thanks for bringing the community you are helping create, joy!
Pogo Park is a clean and safe park my son loves to visit. The people there are friendly and welcoming. Great place for the community.
Amazing park. I drive from union city just to take my kids here. They went once and have asked to go back every weekend!!
Pogo park is a very clean safe place for my children and I to go to. They have activities for all ages to engage in. The park also offers free lunches for it patrons which is very helpful and much appreciated.
Pogo Park is an authentic community based agency where folks from Richmond CA prioritize need, design and execute responses and enlarge the circle of stakeholders as they work to improve their neighborhoods
Pogo Park has transformed several areas in Richmond, CA into exciting and vibrant areas for the community. They have provided resources, play areas, jobs and more to the entire community and have enriched peoples lives. They truly make a difference.
Pogo Park is an amazing community group - I have been working with them for the last month and can only say it's a privilege to work with such committed folks. Everyone throws in to develop life giving green spaces in extremely impoverished areas. Pogo Park is the definition of effective, ground up, community development.
This non-profit achieves a very high ratio of results per dollar invested.
Not only in the short term but the effect will last into the future of the communities served.
Working with POGO PARK is the most rewarding thing I've done in my 40 year career.
Pogo Park is exceptional in every regard: their mission, leadership, vision, action, and involvement at the community level. It is truly one of the most unique and impactful non-profits I have ever been associated with. The community renovation and restoration they have done in the form of parks and programs is beautiful and magical and there is so much more to come. They are visionaries who know how to execute.
Pogo Park sets the bar higher than anyone for authentic community engagement at every level of the project, from vision to conception to on the ground implementation!
I see the team working hard every day, creating a beautiful space for Richmond residents. They are conscientious of the community, they are respectful, they are kind, and they are amazingly productive. I have loved all my interactions with the team and look forward to their future projects!
Pogo Park is a welcoming and inspiring place that shares simple nature with a local community. When I first went to Pogo Park, I learned about how the neighbors all pitched in to help build the fence and how they all have "eyes" on what they view as their park. There is a great tricycle path, Zoomba, beautiful trees to provide shade and a place to relax, a tot lot and a place for kids to do their homework. It truly is a special gathering place for the community!!!!
Pogo park is such an amazing nonprofit! I attended a fundraising event back in October of 2016 and was in awe in how beautiful the work they were doing was. The playgrounds they built with the help of the community were so amazingly beautiful and carefully thought out. All the staff were so welcoming and friendly. It was truly such an amazing experience to be a part of and be able to see the joy in the children’s eyes as they had a beautiful, clean, and welcoming park to explore and feel safe. Pogo park truly did an amazing job and continues to inspire me with their work every day!
Pogo Park is doing remarkable work with the community in the Iron Triangle. Toody Maher is diligent about working with local residents so that the community's divergent can voices be heard. She is a great facilitator. The community park at Elm Playlot is truly a park made by the people who live in the neighborhood. That's what makes this park unique.
I have been going to pogo park for years and absolutely love it. The park environment is one of the best I have ever been to. The staffed park keeps it organized and clean and feel like a family. The group of people who work are great and very involved.
Pogo Park is a critical nonprofit in the Richmond community. The access to quality, safe green space serves to bring the community together, and engages people from all walks of life.
Pogo Park is a community gem. Laura and her team were incredibly supportive in helping us (a neighborhood college program) connect with prospective students, and in sharing with us an immensely helpful list of local resources for our students.
Visited Pogo Park's Elm Playlot in July, 2018. What a beautiful space. Pogo Park has turned this park into a welcoming, well-kept, safe and fun space for the community. What I loved most was that local residents are part of the Park staff. Not only was Pogo Park's Elm Playlot beautifully kept, but the surrounding area was also kept well too. I can only imagine the impact the Park has made on the surrounding community.
I have visited Pogo Park's Elm playlot a few times and love how calm and beautiful it is there. Plus having access to a bathroom and shady spots to sit is great too! There were lots of kids and activities going on. Pogo Park does a great job keeping it clean and staffed.
This is a truly unique little park that the community built from scratch. Pogo Park provides jobs and creates beauty in a much-needed area.
Elm Playlot, the park that was built and run by Pogo Park is an outstanding park. The quality of the park and the change it brought to the neighborhood is phenomenal. Anyone can go see for themselves what a blessing this park is for residents of the Iron Triangle neighborhood.
Pogo Park is doing amazing work in Richmond. It's wonderful to see a community coming together around a project.
I work as a volunteer at Pogo Park and I've lived in the surrounding Iron Triangle neighborhood in Richmond, CA for more than 20 years.
Since Pogo Park began reclaiming some of our dilapidated parks many years ago, our neighborhoods have undergone a metamorphosis.
More than 5,000 children are now within a seven minute walk of one of Pogo Park's playgrounds. All youth are continually offered ever-changing, free play-programming on a drop-in basis, Monday through Saturday in such activities as tetherball, volleyball, football, basketball, soccer, zip-line riding, ping pong, swinging, running, dancing, climbing, wrestling, balancing, boxing, jumping, bike-riding, skateboarding, arts and crafts, chess, puzzles, drawing, painting, sewing, and building.
Pogo Park even recently started a 4 pm Zumba dance class in one of their parks which is now packed with middle-aged women seeking some late-afternoon exercise.
Pogo Park has built sturdy playgrounds with cutting-edge play equipment and radically interactive recreational activities that have not only reinvigorated local youth but energized the whole community.
They are just a superb and outstanding organization.
I want to commend Pogo Park for their impressive work as one of our district's official distribution points to provide nutritious food through the local school district’s free meals program. Each summer, Pogo Park serves more than 10,000 healthy meals to hungry children in their neighborhood which is in the center of the city of Richmond, CA.
Pogo Park's remodeled playgrounds are the perfect places for kids in our economically challenged community to receive a nutritious meal and participate in a range of recreational activities during the summer months.
Their parks have become critical hubs in our community offering thousands of children mental, physical and spiritual nourishment.
Pogo Park is a sanctuary for our school district's kids and I can't recommend their work more highly.
Pogo Park is an astonishingly creative and hard-working non-profit organization that reclaims and rebuilds abandoned urban parks in the Iron Triangle neighborhood in the City of Richmond, CA.
Each summer I work as a volunteer for Pogo Park which organizes "The Pogo Park All-Stars" at its renovated parks – a work and training program for local 11-14 year old children that positively affects a group of young people who are at a critical developmental phase of their lives. Pogo All-Stars learn to supervise the parks, design and build unique play elements, and play with children.
In our community in inner-city Richmond there are few programs for young people during the summer months and "The Pogo All-Stars" program has been a godsend. Instead of wandering the streets looking for something to do, Pogo Park offers local teens an opportunity to learn from supervisors and also mentor young children. It has been a fantastic success and is just one of the many inventive activities that Pogo Park has created for the community.
I can't recommend the Pogo Park organization enough. They have been such an amazing positive force in our community.
Today, roughly 83% of Americans live in an urban environment, and Pogo Park is concentrating efforts to reclaim public green spaces serving residents in inner-city, disadvantaged communities – often their only contact with nature.
Over the last decade, Pogo Park, a local non-profit in Richmond, CA, has pushed to transform abandoned parks into thriving, green children's play spaces in the city’s Iron Triangle neighborhood, a neglected community of color with roughly 13,000 residents.
The Iron Triangle suffers from high rates of unemployment and poverty, underfunded schools, violence and urban decay. The area is surrounded by large manufacturing plants including the Chevron Refinery, Port of Richmond, BNSF Railroad, I-580 Freeway and Richmond Parkway that contribute to the neighborhood’s high levels of ground, water, and air pollution.
Through the building of its refurbished parks, Pogo Park has provided work-skill training, and badly needed jobs to local residents. They have beautified the neighborhood with lush green spaces, and they are transforming a car-centric neighborhood into pedestrian and bicycle-friendly terrain. Pogo Park is extending the power of parks into nearby streets thereby increasing safety, eco-awareness and hope.
In all my years working as an urban design consultant I’ve never been as excited as I am with Pogo Park's ongoing work. Their success is the result of more than 10 years of neighborhood efforts ignited from the ground up. They have empowered residents to heal themselves, drastically changed the trajectory of thousands of lives, and injected a strong measure of environmental and social justice into a severely disadvantaged community.
The Pogo Park organization is expertly managed and is a powerhouse in our community. I strongly urge anyone interested in youth, jobs, play, community organizing, eco-spaces and economic growth in a severely disadvantaged community to take a look at its website: www.pogopark.org ..... and most of all, pay them a visit.
Rich active outdoor play is the engine that drives healthy child development. Research shows that such play improves physical health and boosts social skills, empathy, creativity, and imagination. Pogo Park promotes deep play—the kind that feeds children’s bodies, minds, and spirits and connects them to nature, the community, and their own inner strengths.
I have worked as a volunteer for Pogo Park for nearly a decade and I have seen the overwhelming power of building strong, safe playgrounds with a rich program of activities within a short walking distance of children who need it most - those living in the inner-city.
Pogo Park has changed Richmond's Iron Triangle neighborhood with its multi-layered approach to urban renewal by building a spectacular network of verdant parks accessible to more than 5,000 children in the community.
But Pogo Park hasn't just built the parks and left. They've stayed deeply involved by hiring local residents to manage the parks, conduct sports programs and other enrichment activities. Many of the impoverished kids in this community once had nowhere to go and nothing to do after-school and on weekends. Now they have all been flushed out of their houses and into local playgrounds to play with friends, socialize with other families and connect with mentors who know them and their neighborhood best.
Pogo Park is one of the most impactful non-profit organizations I've ever seen or had the pleasure to work with. I highly recommend coming out to Richmond sometime and seeing the incredible work they are doing.
I have worked as an advisor for several years for Pogo Park, a community-based nonprofit organization in the city of Richmond, CA that re-claims, transforms, rebuilds and then manages abandoned inner-city parks into "Pogo Parks": enriched play spaces for at-risk children to learn, grow, and thrive.
After a decade of effort, Pogo Park has renovated two central city parks (Elm Playlot and Harbour-8 Park) in Richmond's one-square mile “Iron Triangle” neighborhood - a low-income community of color whose 13,000 residents suffer from the devastating effects of poverty, violence, poor-performing schools, blight, unemployment, and hopelessness. The 5,000 children of this community suffer disproportionately from poor health due to bad diets and lack of exercise. More than 50% are overweight; their rates of asthma are in the highest 2% of the state; they have high rates of diabetes, ADD, nature-deficit disorder, depression and a variety of additional health issues according to recent state health statistics.
Before Pogo Park came along, these children were trapped inside their homes because their local streets and public parks were inaccessible and (in the words of local residents) "dirty, dull, and dangerous." National research studies all confirm the critical importance of play in a child’s healthy development. Today, the two "Pogo Parks" are functioning as a powerful health intervention into the lives of thousands of vulnerable, underserved neighborhood children and their families that actually works.
There are a number of compelling reasons: Pogo Park designs and builds their parks from the "ground up" with the active input and engagement of local residents (rather than imposing play structures from "the top down").
With the collaboration of the community Pogo Park then develops innovative play programs involving "loose parts" that allow children to create, build and then disassemble structures. We add creative activities such as Zumba dancing, chess competitions and art classes. We construct innovative play structures like zip-lines, forts, disc swings and roped spider webs.
Then Pogo Park staffs their parks with adult supervision at all times - many are parents of the very kids they're watching. The result has been magical, packed and safe playgrounds filled with healthier kids and families supervised by local residents with an increased connection to and investment in their communities.
Pogo Park’s impact is visible in the lives of the local residents they have hired, in the parks that are being restored, and in the electrifying effect of this child-based community development model on the entire neighborhood. Pogo Park has found a way to engage impoverished communities to heal themselves, creating a paradigm for urban renewal that can be rolled out nationally.
I can't speak highly enough about Pogo Park's work and vision. They are truly a top-notch organization that is changing thousands of lives everyday.
I have donated to Pogo Park for many years and know that every dollar I've donated goes directly into building and managing their amazing urban parks. The Iron Triangle neighborhood in the City of Richmond is one of the most disadvantaged communities in California with high rates of unemployment, poverty and violence. What better way to counter these elements than building a series of beautiful, restored parks with easy access where families can gather and children can exercise, learn critical social skills and play. These urban parks are often the only chance many Iron Triangle residents have to interact with nature. Having these flourishing green playgrounds provides a critical foundation for the overall physical, social and mental health of the whole community. Again, I can't think of a dollar better spent!!!
As a visitor to the City of Richmond over many years, I'm astounded at the work of Pogo Park. This non-profit organization employed a unique strategy in renovating abandoned city parks and transforming them into critical places for local kids to play. One of their key methods was to form a large grass-roots community effort to enlist residents in the design, construction and management of their own parks. The result is the community has an emotional investment in the health and welfare of the parks. The results have been spectacular. Not a spec of trash or graffiti and the playgrounds are now filled with laughing and exercising children. Pogo Park has had a tremendous impact on the social health and well-being of this community. If only every city had a non-profit as well run and far-seeing as this.
I am a photographer and was introduced to the work of Pogo Park by friends in the neighborhood. I've been visiting their renovated parks for several years and the impact they've had on the community has been profound. I first came to the area more than a decade ago and the parks in inner-Richmond then were completely abandoned and covered in graffiti. Now I visit and am astounded to see hundreds of children playing in safe, open environments with innovative new play structures and creative play programs. Kids are our future and play is critical to their development. I can't think of money better spent than these rebuilt parks that have completely revitalized the whole neighborhood creating green, beautiful sanctuaries for families and their kids. The ripple effects of good feeling and hope have been profound. A truly great organization!
Pogo Park is a revolutionary non-profit organization that does amazing work rebuilding abandoned playgrounds in the disadvantaged Iron Triangle neighborhood in the City of Richmond, CA. They have operated in the area for more than a decade and have changed the lives of thousands of underprivileged children by giving them access to creative and rich play spaces.
I recently attended the open house at Pogo Park. I was so impressed and inspired by the work they have done and the plans for the future growth. Toody has created an amazing environment for Richmond residents.
Not only is Pogo Park a beautiful and engaging park for children, their families, and the community, but it is also a model of child development and community development, empowering the many caring residents of the Iron Triangle to drive transformation in their own neighborhood. The park is a gem in the middle of a tough neighborhood, and the people are what makes it sparkle.
Pogo Park is doing things that are truly unique. The organization has taken a neighborhood in one of the worst neighborhoods in America and working to transform it using the people who live there. It is at the same time creating jobs and has the vision of creating local change that can be a model for cities across America. This is what will "make America great again," this bottom-up change for our cities, not what a certain politician means. I am so proud to be a board member of this exciting organization.
Great parks, nice staff, clean facilities- so nice to have a clean bathroom to use at Elm playlot. Fun to watch the kids on the Zip line and the disc swings. At Elm they hand out free meals for supper each day too. This park is beautiful, unique and feels safe.
POGO PARK IS REVILITIZING NEIGHBORHOODS ONE PARK AT A TIME IN RICHMOND, CA’S TOUGH IRON TRIANGLE.
They do this by allowing neighbors to re-envision what kind of park would best suit their community’s needs; then get paid and trained to build the park they know will best serve their community; then staff their new park with trained, paid, local people to ensure that kids and their families have a safe, creative, active park to go to in a neighborhood in desperate need of outdoor safe havens.
Pogo Park is a model for reinvigorating communities through reclaiming local parks in neighborhoods across America. They aren’t just talking the talk. They are walking the walk! Don’t believe me? Contact Pogo Park and visit one of their showcase parks.
Visit them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PogoPark/
Pogo Park is an amazing organization not only transforming play spaces, but transforming communities by hiring community residents to plan, design, build and run the park. Because the residents themselves have created this beautiful space, there is a feeling of pride and ownership and the park is well maintained and taken care of.
The work PogoPark is doing is truly community development!!
Pogo Park is revitalizing communities from within, starting with safe and unique parks built by the people, for the people. A truly inspiring and effective model for growth - I encourage you to check them out. Pogo Parks are hubs of happiness and hope!
I learned about Pogo Park a few years after I moved to Richmond. What a hidden gem it is!!
I have visited and there are so many wonderful aspects of this non profit. It is informed completely by the residents of the Richmond neighborhoods that it serves. It has transformed and will continue to transform, areas and neighborhoods into safe, community spirited and educational spaces for children through the play lots and for the neighborhood at large. It creates work and training opportunities for residents and young people. I am proud to
be a supporter and encourage you to join me!!
Pogo Park is bringing hope to a community that desperately needs it. People think of the Bay Area as a wealthy region, but there are overlooked pockets like the Iron Triangle in Richmond CA, where children have no place to play; where it's too dangerous to walk outside because of gang violence, and where the only option for kids is to be stuck inside their apartments. I'm thankful for the work of Pogo Park and hope the organization continues to run for a long time, for the sake of the community.
Pogo Park is an organization that is working really deeply within the community. I visited this organization as part of a college project, and was really impressed by what I saw. Not only have they turned two abandoned parks into amazing revitalized places, but the work they are doing is really affecting the lives of people who live nearby. The local residents themselves helped build the park and now work in the park and keep it safe for kids. This type of local ownership seems to make a big difference. It feels like a park that belongs to everyone. It's really unique.