Philly's Playstreets program more crucial than ever this summer, residents say

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- A Philadelphia woman says the city's "Playstreets" program is especially important for kids this summer as the coronavirus pandemic has shuttered rec centers, swimming pools and camps for the coming months.

Delores Poole routinely signs up for the program which provides a safe, fun place for Philadelphia's children to play each summer.

"With everything that's being closed, (kids) still need to see people," she said.

In the past, 22nd and Mercy streets would see anywhere from 25-30 kids a day. But Poole is bracing for more this summer, all of whom will practice social distancing.

"They can go in their house to wash their hands, sit in front of the doors, it's less activity, but then again they still have socialization.

About 350 city streets participate in the program, which also provides free summer meals. The city even extended the deadline for neighborhoods to sign up as stay-at-home orders remain in effect.

"It's important for them to have activities that they can rely on to keep them busy and occupied for when they go back to school," said Dominic Eason.

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