Metro Parks Tacoma

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Accreditation Benefits

20-things-large-adCAPRA, Commission for Accreditation of Park & Recreation Agencies

It's official!
Metro Parks Tacoma is a CAPRA Accredited Agency.
Read the press release

Celebrate with us!
A public reception will be held prior to the Board of Park Commissioners’ meeting on October 27. Learn More

  • The Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) recognizes park and recreation agencies for excellence in operation and service.

  • Agency accreditation is available to all entities administering park and recreation systems, including municipalities, townships, counties, special districts and regional authorities, councils of government, schools, and military installations.

Read an overview of the CAPRA Accreditation process

What are the benefits of becoming an accredited agency?

CAPRA accreditation logoBenefits for the public:

  • Assurance and validation of well-administered services in accord with approved professional practices
  • Potential for external financial support and savings to the public
  • External recognition of a quality governmental service
  • Holds and agency accountable to the public and ensures responsiveness to meet their needs
  • Improves customer and quality services
Benefits for the agency: 

    • Public and political recognition
    • Increased efficiency and evidence of accountability.
    • Answers the question, "How are we doing?" through extensive self evaluation
    • Identifies areas for improvement by comparing the agency against national standards of best practices
    • Sustains staff training, education and investment
    • Enhances staff teamwork and pride by engaging all staff in the process
    • Creates an environment for regular reviews of operations, policies, and procedures and promotes continual improvement
    • Forces written documentation of policies and procedures

    How common is accreditation?
    • Only 135 agencies, 3 in Washington State (Tacoma, Renton & Bellevue), have obtained and maintained national accreditation. 
    • 27 additional agencies are in the process currently.

    Other agency accreditations:

    • Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium
      Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) accredited September 2012.

    • Northwest Trek Wildlife Park
      Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) accredited September 2011.

    Learn more about AZA accreditation, including the process