MEDIA ALERT - 1000 Play Streets to aid COVID-19 recovery

Submitted by karenwilliams on Tue, 08/31/2021 - 09:15

1000 Play Streets to aid COVID-19 recovery

Play Australia is proud to announce the national launch of 1000 Play Streets – a movement to reconnect our socially-isolated communities as we look toward COVID-19 recovery and to encourage more play for all, on our quiet residential streets.

Barb Champion, Executive Director of Play Australia says, “many of our communities are hurting at the moment, people are lonelier than ever due to restrictions and our children are suffering, due to a lack of opportunity to get outside and play.”

“Now is the time for our Local Governments across Australia to plan for a brighter future and join the 1000 Play Streets movement so we can all reimagine our streets as places for neighbours to come together and play, to ultimately improve community health and wellbeing” says Ms Champion.

Play Australia welcomes Local Governments to join the movement and download a free toolkit, full of planning advice on how to support temporary street closures for community Play Streets.
Watch Play Streets in action here:P

The toolkit is the culmination of a two-year national pilot delivered in partnership between Play Australia, La Trobe University, six Local Governments across four states, Community Partners and residents – involving 458 children, 308 adults and made possible by 37 Play Street Hosts.

And La Trobe University’s pilot findings* are encouraging with:
• 90% of adults surveyed reporting feeling more confident to talk to their neighbours in future; and
• 100% of surveyed participants with children reporting they are now more likely to support their child/ren to play outside with other neighbours more regularly.
* Findings from 25 attendee survey responses; 40 interviews with Play Street supporters; and observations at Play Streets.

Play Australia is committed to realising 1000 Play Streets across Australia by 2025 as part of their current five-year strategy.
What is a Play Street?

A Play Street is a simple concept, it is a quiet residential street where neighbours of all ages connect and play together, normally lasting 2-3 hours. These are small-scale gatherings for neighbours, ideally coordinated by residents themselves.

The movement is funded by Sport Australia’s Move It AUS Participation Program and by Office for Recreation Sport and Racing’s Game On Partnership Program in South Australia.