National Children's Day UK

17 May 2015

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Play is so important to optimal child development that it has been recognised by the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights as a right of every child (Article 31). It is vital for the enjoyment of childhood as well as children's physical, social, cognitive, emotional and spiritual development. 
See what the United Nations has to say about play.

The 2004 review  Getting Serious About Play,  on which the Big Lottery Fund Play Programme was based, states that:  "Play means what children and young people do when they follow their own ideas and interests, in their own way and for their own reasons."  It is therefore all about children's natural creativity and being able to do things without needing to focus on specific, pre-determined outcomes."

Over the last few decades a variety of factors have significantly reduced children's ability to play, including changes in family structure, a more hurried lifestyle, a more risk-averse society and an increased focus on academic attainment. 

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