Recreation for children on social assistance, 4–17 years old, pays for itself the same year
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A randomized control trial completed in the Hamilton-Wentworth and Halton regions of Ontario, Canada, was created to assess the effects and expense of age-appropriate provider-initiated and subsidized versus self-directed and self-financed methods of recreation. Upon completion, this study proved that the annual per-person expenditure for the subsidized, quality recreation paid for itself by children's lower use of healthcare and social services. The children within the subsidized recreation group had lower use of physician, physiotherapy, probation, children's aid society, social work, psychologist and services in comparison with those in the non-subsidized group. The subsidized group also proved to be beneficial for the parents as well. The use of health and social services, by the parents in the subsidized group, was also decreased in comparison with those of the self-financed group. This group also proved to have improvement of the global socioeconomic status, with a 10% greater exit from the social assistance program within 1 year.
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