PlayShaper workshops, delivered by PlayBoard NI and hosted by Mid and East Antrim Borough Council, have taken place.
The PlayShaper programme is targeted at those who plan, design, build and manage public spaces and aims to provide a better understanding of the importance of children and young people’s play and the role they have in enabling, or restricting, it within the public realm.
Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Councillor Lindsay Millar, said: “PlayShaper is one of the three core elements of ‘Play Matters’ – a Play and Leisure Project funded through the Early Intervention Transformation Programme (EITP) – and is a programme of professional play development, training and guidance for a range of stakeholders who directly or indirectly influence play.
“These workshops will be key to the implementation of council’s Play Strategy and will enable stakeholders to deliver a number of council’s Community Plan objectives.
“The programme has already been delivered across a number of council areas in Northern Ireland, and Mid and East Antrim Borough Council is delighted to host PlayboardNI to educate key stakeholders and promote the importance of play for children and young people, and for all our citizens.”
Alderman Maureen Morrow, who attended the first two PlayShaper workshops, said: “Play is such an important part of any child’s development. Play is crucial for healthy growth and physical fitness, and with only one in eight children reportedly completing the recommended 60 minutes of moderate physical activity per day, it may be more important than ever.
“Play is also crucial for cognitive skills, social development, memory and language. Imaginative and risky play are essential for children, and it is important our environment and facilities here in Mid and East Antrim reflect these needs.
“The PlayShaper workshops have been a great way to focus the mind on key issues surrounding play, both fixed and non-fixed, and consider how council can support effective partnership working to create and enhance play friendly spaces.”
The final two PlayShaper workshops are scheduled for 23 and 30 January 2019. If you are interested in attending, please contact Play Development Officer Denise McVeigh at firstname.lastname@example.org