Your Nationally Accredited Parks & Recreation Department
The Cedar Rapids Parks and Recreation Department joined 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 on September 9, 2021.
What is CAPRA?NRPA's Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) provides quality assurance and quality improvement of accredited park and recreation agencies throughout the United States by providing agencies with a management system of best practices. CAPRA is the only national accreditation of park and recreation agencies and is a valuable measure of an agency’s overall quality of operation, management, and service to the community. Achieving CAPRA accreditation is the best way to demonstrate that your agency and your staff provide your community with the highest level of service.
Community Benefits of Accreditation
- Demonstrates that the agency meets national standards of best practice.
- Recognizes the community as a great place to live.
- Helps secure external financial support and reduce costs for the community.
- Holds an agency accountable to the public and ensures responsiveness to meet their needs.
- Ensures that all staff are providing quality customer service.
Our Path to AccreditationWe are excited to have received this designation from CAPRA, and be among 193 cities nationwide and two in Iowa who have met these rigorous standards. Accreditation is important to the City of Cedar Rapids because it demonstrates that we are constantly working to meet industry best standards.
The process for accreditation involved a formal application, self-assessments, a site visit by a team of trained visitors that resulted in a written report, and a hearing with the commission to grant accreditation. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, visitations were held virtually. Once accredited, the agency must uphold the standards by submitting an annual report and is reviewed again in five years. It should be noted that this report found that the Cedar Rapids Parks & Recreation Department successfully met all of the 154, or 100 percent of the CAPRA standards, far exceeding the minimum requirements for initial accreditation.
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.
About the National Recreation and Park Association
The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) is the leading not-for-profit organization dedicated to building strong, vibrant and resilient communities through the power of parks and recreation. With more than 60,000 members, NRPA advances this mission by investing in and championing the work of park and recreation professionals and advocates — the catalysts for positive change in service of equity, climate-readiness, and overall health and well-being. For more information, visit www.nrpa.org. For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit www.parksandrecreation.org.