Glasgow gears up for playtime

City-wide strategy will highlight the benefits for all-round well- being, reports Julia Horton

Julia Horton

Primary pupils have joined councillors in a giant game of tig and hula-hoop-pass to launch Glasgow's new play strategy - with the aim of reminding everyone that play is fun and beneficial to well-being.

The strategy, Playing for Real, sets out Glasgow's priorities for play over the next three years; these include encouraging families to play by improving parks to make them safer, cleaner environments.

The strategy guarantees Glasgow's 92,000-plus children aged 15 and under the right to play, set out in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

It is founded on the principle that play is fundamental to the development of healthy, happy children who help create a vibrant city in which to grow up, live and work.

Speaking at last week's launch by Glasgow Life, the council's culture and sports trust, Councillor Allison Hunter said: "The vision for all children to have the opportunity to develop through play is rightly ambitious, cutting across leisure, learning, health, work and our environment, but it is ultimately achievable.

"Providing young people with places to go, opportunities to be active and ways to safely challenge themselves is extremely important.

"I believe that this commitment to play will benefit our children and through them allow the city to flourish."

Praising the strategy at the launch, Marguerite Hunter Blair, chief executive of Play Scotland, added: "Play supports many aspects of children's development; their learning, socialisation, physical development, self-esteem, well-being and management of risk.

"Good play experiences enrich and enhance children's lives in many ways, with benefits for their health and well-being and that of the wider community, now and in the future."

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Julia Horton

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