Welsh children set to get out and play
Today, children from Wales will join over 850,000 others to celebrate Playday- the national day for play in the UK.
As well as a celebration of children’s right to play, Playday is a campaign that highlights the importance of play in children’s lives. This year in excess of 600 celebratory community events are taking place across England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales to mark the annual campaign, with hundreds of individuals, families and whole communities getting involved with the 2013 Playful places campaign which calls on everyone to help make sure that the places where children live and hang out are great places to play.
Survey results released today for Playday 2013 found that over 50% of adults reported playing out at least seven times a week when they were growing up, compared to less than a quarter of children (23%) today, and with 40% of children saying they want to play out more, it is clear that there has never been a better time to get out and play!
A number of Assembly Members are attending Playday celebrations across the country; Deputy Minister for Tackling Poverty, Vaughan Gething AM, will join hundreds of families attending an event in Caerphilly. He said:
‘Play is such an important part of our children’s lives, helping them to grow both physically and emotionally. This event is a unique way to celebrate this. It is important that all of us remember that play is vital to a child’s development and we must all make sure we give them every chance to do so.’
Responding to the survey findings Mike Greenaway, Director of Play Wales, said:
‘We need to recognise the importance of providing children with time, space and freedom to play in their own way. We need to support them and recognise that for their health, wellbeing and long-term development children need playful places and opportunities to play outside.'
‘Whilst every day of the year should be a play day, national Playday is our annual opportunity to celebrate and campaign for children’s right to play. There are 650,00 children and young people in Wales who want to play – and children regularly tell us that outside is where they want to play. Although the Welsh Government is making great strides in recognising the importance of children’s play – by being the first country in the world to legislate for children’s play – as a society we still have a long way to go to ensure Wales is a play-friendly place for our children.’