The Anne Arundel County Department of Recreation and Parks joins the ranks of elite park and recreation agencies across the country by earning accreditation through the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) and the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA). This distinguished accomplishment was awarded during the 2020 NRPA Annual Conference: A Virtual Experience.
CAPRA accreditation is the only national accreditation for park and recreation agencies, and is a measure of an agency’s overall quality of operation, management and service to the community. This mark of distinction indicates that an agency has met rigorous standards related to the management and administration of lands, facilities, resources, programs, safety and services.
“The CAPRA accreditation has been a goal of the department for over five years. It represents a tremendous effort from our staff to take a hard look at ourselves and what improvements we needed to make to become the high performance agency we sought to be,” said Director Rick Anthony. “I am extremely proud of our team for reaching this important milestone. This is something our residents can celebrate and have confidence that we are delivering the quality services they deserve.”
As part of the accreditation process, Anne Arundel County Department of Recreation and Parks had to demonstrate compliance with 151 recognized standards and document all policies and procedures. Often the process helps identify efficiencies and heighten areas of accountability, all of which translate into higher quality service and operation to benefit the community.
“I’ve often suspected we have one of the best Rec & Parks departments in the country, and now this national certification proves it,” said County Executive Pittman. “I’d like to congratulate Director Rick Anthony and all the staff that worked so hard for this impressive achievement.”
The process for accreditation involves a formal application, self-assessments, a site visit by a team of trained visitors that results in a written report, and a hearing with the commission to grant accreditation. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s visitations were held virtually. Once accredited, the agency must uphold the standards by submitting an annual report and is reviewed again in five years.
The Commission is comprised of representatives from NRPA, the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration, the National Association of County Park and Recreation Officials, the International City/County Management Association, the Academy for Leisure Sciences, the Armed Forces Recreation Network and the Council of State Executive Directors. For more information about CAPRA accreditation, visit www.nrpa.org/CAPRA
For more information about the Anne Arundel County Department of Recreation and Parks please visit https://www.aacounty.org/departments/recreation-parks/ or follow us on Facebook