PLAY GLOUCESTERSHIRE is a registered charity that provides regular, free play sessions in urban parks and rural locations across the county. Our energetic Play Rangers deliver outdoor, active play, sports, arts and environmental activities to school-aged children throughout the year, whatever the weather.
SUPPORT US: Text PGPR07 and the amount of your choice of £1, £2, £3, £4, £5 or £10 to 70070 (for example PGPR07 £1)

National Play Day – Wednesday 3rd August

IMG_1801On Wednesday, thousands of children and young people from across the United Kingdom were out playing, celebrating Playday – the national day for play.

 This year’s Playday theme ‘Play Matters.’ celebrates the many benefits of playing out doors. Many of our childhood memories are reminiscent of climbing trees, making dens, jumping in puddles, making mud pies, rolling down hills, playing with water, chasing, hide and seek, climbing.

 It will be no surprise then to learn that when children talk about their preferred play experiences, they more often than not cite outdoor play as their favourite activity.   This makes sense; the outdoors is the very best place for children to practice and master emerging physical skills. Frequent and regular opportunities to explore and play in the outdoor environment is essential for children’s holistic health, their well-being, health, happiness, learning and development.

 So because we wanted to make sure the PLAY MATTERS message gets across Gloucestershire our Play Rangers are celebrating National Play Day across all of our play sessions this week from Willersley to Bishops Cleeve, from Chesterton to Gloucester and all sites in between.

 Tying into the theme of National Play Day we have been featured on BBC Radio Gloucestershire discussing the importance of play IMG_1788and why it matters for children, young people, their families and their communities,  follow the links to hear from

 Director of Play Pip Levett – 1 hour 15mins in http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0417zgq#play

 Three of our AMAZING Young Volunteers & Active Play Coordinator Simon Jarvis

- 45mins in http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p041809x

 Urban Team Leader Ben Morris – 46mins in

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0418038

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Vans refurbished thanks to Nationwide

The Play Gloucestershire blue vans are getting on a bit now – they were bought when the charity started work in 2008.  While regular maintenance keeps them running smoothly, the inevitable dings and scrapes that happen over the years mean they are no longer looking their best.  Recently the Finlay Foundation and Nationwide helped us with the cost of refurbishing one of the vans which now looks fantastic.  Since then Nationwide have come back to us with the exciting news that they are giving us a very generous donation of £4,900 to pay for the remaining four vans to be refurbished.

But Nationwide wanted to offer even more than a donation and arranged to bring a group of volunteers to come and give the vans and the equipment a thorough clean and tidy before the busy summer season.  Five volunteers from the Gloucester, Cheltenham and Cirencester branches came to meet us at Robinswood Hill on Wednesday 8th July and did a wonderful job of cleaning the vans; they then had lunch and chatted with PG staff to find out more about the work Play Gloucestershire does.

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Branch Manager, Nick Craddock, commented, ‘All of my team really enjoyed the opportunity to get out of the branch and do something tangible for a worthwhile charity. Although hard work, it was great to hear in detail what Play Gloucestershire did and in particular to get to talk to the Play Rangers. That and seeing the amount of “stuff” you have in the vans gave us a real idea of what you’re all about. It was fab.’

‘With regard to the Van refurbs we were delighted that Play Glos was chosen out of all the nominated charities to receive the grant. This is a tough process as charities apply to Nationwide for the grant by completing an application. The criteria for consideration are quite tough; we then choose from all of those applications who wins. Happily it was Play Gloucestershire which is special for us as we are building an ever closer relationship with you. The grant really helps us support something in our local community. We support Play Gloucestershire because of the great work they do in local communities for children.’

We would like to say a big Thank You to everyone at Nationwide for all their hard work and for their continuing support.

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Young Volunteers Training Camp

There was glorious sunshine and summer heat for our Young Volunteers training weekend in Saul. Glamping on the playing fields, 20 young people joined us to develop their playwork skills, plan for some Rio Olympic inspired fun over this summer, and of course to meet and make friends. On the Saturday, Team Leaders Ben and led workshops on the Edge of Chaos, the Manchester Circles, physical literacy and the Playwork Principles. There was also lots of team building and problem solving challenges as the Young Volunteers navigated their way through ‘Play Land’ – a fantasy scenario involving dragon eggs, the Lake of Misery and Mount Doom!

Although technically we called it a sleepover, not much sleep happened, and the local foxes did their best to terrify some young people with some close encounters. On Sunday the Young Volunteers ranging in age from 11 to 18, started to plan for some playful Olympic fun, cooked their lunch on small fire pits foraging for wood, and cooled down with a water fight.

Grateful thanks to the High Sheriff’s Fund for again supporting our Young Volunteer development. We salute you Young Volunteers! You are amazing and we couldn’t do what we do without your playful fun, kindness and energy.

YVols Training Camp

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Donate to Play Gloucestershire through Attapoll survey app

A while ago we told you that the lovely people at Attapoll have us as a chosen charity you can donate to via their quick survey service. THANK YOU to those who have donated already!

Previously they have only been available on android phones, but this week Attapoll are up and running on the Apple app store.

If you have a smart phone and want to donate money to Play Gloucestershire for answering short (“micro”) surveys, download the app and follow the instructions.

Thank you for advance from all at Team PG

http://www.attapoll.com/

Play helping to ease anxieties about SATs

At this time of year, our Play Rangers are supporting lots of year 6 children who are feeling under pressure from their SATs exams. The build up to these tests is intense, as schools feel the pressure to secure good results. There is lots of controversy around the wisdom of testing children in this way, and the effect it has on their physical and mental wellbeing.

Our Play Rangers are supporting year 6 children through both community and school-based play. We see outdoor play as the essential antidote to exam pressures, and our afterschool community sessions really help by providing active and creative child-led play supported by kind playworkers and of course helped by some very healthy snacks. All designed to relieve stress and help children sleep well!

This year we have also provided an in-school Play Nurture Group (PNG) specifically commissioned by a Head Teacher to help with SATs anxieties. This was a creative approach to supporting mental wellbeing, and recognises the restorative effect of outdoor play.

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