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The American Academy of Dermatology has opened applications for this upcoming year’s Shade Structure Grant Program! Dermatologists understand the threat of sun damage and skin cancer better than anyone, and that’s why they are offering a grant of up to $8,000 for the installation of a permanent outdoor shade structure! Many outdoor locations that are frequently visited by families with children do not have adequate shade structures for long days outside. Places like outdoor playgrounds, pools, sports fields, or other outdoor recreation areas should provide a place to get out of the sun and protect people from the harmful ultraviolet rays that you are exposed to outside. Since the AAD began the program in 2000, the Shade Structure Grant Program has funded 324 shade structures across the United States. That’s a lot of shade!

Understanding the importance of proper shade and sun protection is valuable, as skin cancer is one of the most preventable cancers but also one of the most commonly diagnosed. Board-certified dermatologist George J. Hruza, MD, MBA, FAAD, president of the AAD, says that “Nearly 20 Americans die from melanoma every day, Exposure to the sun’s harmful UV rays is the most preventable risk factor for skin cancer, and there are many simple things you can do to protect yourself from the sun.” While applying water-resistant sunscreen before spending time outside is a great start to protecting yourself from sun damage, many people forget to reapply or ultimately sweat it off during long mornings and afternoons on the playground or at the pool. Having a permanent shade structure that is easily accessible at outdoor recreation facilities is the best way for people to find relief from the sun’s rays when spending time outside.

Multi-Level Framed Sails - Shade Structures

A Multi-Level Framed Sail structure from Shade Systems provides plenty of shade and curb appeal over an outdoor area!

Applications for the Shade Structure Grant Program from the American Academy of Dermatology are open until December 31, 2019. All non-profit organizations that provide services, programs, or a curriculum to children and teenagers 18 and younger are eligible to apply. To be considered for the grant, you must receive a recommendation from a member of the American Academy of Dermatology. This recommendation is important to build a new or existing relationship between the organization and dermatologist and improve their commitment to proper skin protection. More about the sponsorship requirements for the shade grant can be found here. The organization that is applying should also demonstrate a previous commitment to sun safety, whether through an educational program about the dangers of skin cancer, or simple signs and brochures available to view at outdoor public recreation areas about proper sun protection.

Lastly, the permanent shade structure must meet the AAD’s requirements. Parkreation is proud to offer permanent shade structures from two of the most dependable brands in the industry, Shade Structures and ICON Shelters, that meet these requirements.

Shade Structures CoolNet fabric screens up to 99% of the sun’s ultraviolet rays, which surpasses the AAD’s requirements while also being durable and easy to remove for the Winter weather in Illinois and Indiana.Their triangular Sail Shades are the perfect solution for areas where post locations may be limited or a stylish, modern look is suitable. We also provide excellent shade solutions for outdoor seating areas such as baseball dugouts, bleachers, or picnic areas with our cantilever shades.

For a permanent hard-top roof shade structure, look no further than ICON Shelters. Their beautiful pre-fabricated shelters, gazebos and arbors create a beautiful and functional centerpiece to any outdoor area. ICON Shelters can also create custom shelters that blend with the surrounding architecture or natural features, creating a unique place to find relief from the sun.

ICON Shelters Indiana

This ICON Shelters looks great, matches the surrounding architecture, and provides shade for dozens of people!

Contact Parkreation for more information about shade solutions, and apply for the American Academy of Dermatology’s Shade Structure Grant Program here!