Build-A-Dream Scholarship
By Office of Communication
Posted on February 28, 2012, February 28, 2012

Parents lined up early for the Parks and Recreation Department's Build-a-Dream Scholarship sign-up event.

The scholarship program is designed to provide recreation opportunities for under-served families with children between the ages of 4 months and 16 years of age. Program eligibility requirements state that the family's income level must meet low-income criteria, and they must be residents of Arlington.

The idea is to give children the opportunity to participate in Parks and Recreation sponsored classes and activities such as music, dance, art classes, gymnastics, sports leagues, and after-school programs. Everyone who participates is encouraged to develop new skills, have social interaction, and take part in physical activity in a safe, positive environment.

At the Build-a-Dream sign-up event, parents pay a $5 registration fee to complete the registration process and sign their children up for the classes. A $65 scholarship is provided for a single child, and there is a maximum of $130 per family for those who sign-up two or more children.

Parents whose children have previously participated in the program have positive comments. "This program provides my children with a very important opportunity to be active and not at home watching television," said Jessica Gomez, mother of three. Ann Marie, mother of four, says, "The activities provided get my children out to exercise, and it's good for the family."

Funding for the scholarship program comes from a combination of sources. The $30,000 available for the February sign-up came from a corporate donor, Concentra, the Arlington Tomorrow Fund, and Community Development and Block Grants. City of Arlington employees also contributed by sponsoring departmental "blue jean days" and by donating the money directly to the scholarship fund.

According to Recreation Department Customer Service Coordinator Tywanda Craft, "In 2011, the Build-a-Dream Scholarship Program served a total of 1,264 Arlington children. This is a wonderful, positive program. It's all about helping kids with their self-esteem and positively impacting their health. We have enough money this time (February sign-up event) to help about 500 children."

A donation from a business or individual to the Build-a-Dream Scholarship Program is tax deductible in accordance with Section 170(c)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code.

Sign-ups for the Build-a-Dream scholarship program are held twice a year, in February and August at the Parks and Recreation office located at 717 Main Street in Arlington. Online applications are available in English or in Spanish.

The Build-a-Dream eligibility guidelines are available at, at your nearest recreation center or by calling the Parks and Recreation Department at 817-459-5474.


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