Since Play Gloucestershire was launched in 2007, an astonishing 100,000 visits to play sessions around Gloucestershire have been clocked up by almost 11,000 children and young people.
“This is a very special milestone for Play Gloucestershire” said Pip Levett, Director of Play. “It’s incredible to think that since I established the charity in 2007, thousands of children and young people have taken part in play sessions across 84 urban and rural Gloucestershire communities.
“Our wonderful team of professional Play Rangers and Young Volunteers support local children and families, in particular those who are disadvantaged, through the transformative power of play. We believe that outdoor play is an essential part of a happy and healthy childhood. Not only are our play sessions good for physical wellbeing, but also, importantly, it helps with mental wellbeing. Our activities help young people to meet and make friends and create a healthy outdoor play habit that they can sustain for life.”
During February half term, we had lots of media interest in our big milestone, with BBC Radio Gloucestershire reporting live from our Podsmead play day. Local newspapers also covered the event, and we would like to thank all the young people that helped promote Play Gloucestershire and advocate for play throughout the week.
Play Gloucestershire rely on their fleet of vans to take play out to where children need it. Disadvantaged and rurally isolated children across Gloucestershire love our active and creative play activities, provided by our team of energetic Play Rangers. Outdoor play is an essential part of a happy and healthy childhood and since 2008, the Play Gloucestershire team have worked in more than 84 local communities with more than 11,000 children.
Our five vans are in need of refurbishment and the first van has been completed, thanks to support from the Finlay Foundation and Nationwide employees. “Our vans are a vital resource for us as we are completely mobile” explained Pip Levett, Director of Play. “The vans work really hard for us and it’s time for the fleet to be refurbished. When we arrive at a play site, the sight of the blue play van arriving causes lots of excitement, and children rush up to greet the Rangers and see what exciting things are on board for them to play with”.
We were thrilled that the Finlay Foundation and Nationwide have supported us and invited them to PGHQ for a photo shoot, and to tell them more about the work that we do. The Finlay Foundation was set up by Niki Connor (pictured below with Pip) after the tragic death of her six year old son, Finlay, who was knocked down and killed by the school bus in 2011. You can find out more about the Finlay Foundation on their website www.finlayfoundation.co.uk
To see a larger version click PG Annual Report Card 2015 LR.
Our Fit for Play programme uses play as a way of getting people active without the need for organised games, sporting events or specialised equipment.
Looking back over 2015 we were very busy with Fit for Play sessions taking place all over the county. Observing and taking part in play we quickly realised how active you get during games of tag, building dens, or joining informal games of sport such as football, table tennis or cricket. Please take a look at the linked infographics for more information and highlights.
Thanks to Councillors Richard Leppington, Tracy Millard, Graham Morgan, Pamela Tracy, Kathy Williams & Suzanne Williams who used their Gloucestershire County Council ACTIVE TOGETHER funding to provide Fit For Play sessions in 8 areas across the county.
Fit For Play sessions will continue this year and we are happy to discuss options on how to get our Play Rangers to other areas.