Forest of Dean Play and Free-time Strategy
So what is the Strategy?
It’s a document that sets out what organisations in the District will do between 2007 and 2012 to improve the quality of play opportunities for the District’s children and young people. The Strategy has been created by The Forest of Dean Play Partnership, a body of over 20 interested organisations committed to improving play and free-time activities for children and young people.
It has been developed involving local children, young people, parents, community members and organisations. There is already good play and free-time related work being undertaken in the Forest of Dean and we want to further enhance this as well as developing more opportunities for children and young people in the Forest.
Play is …
‘What children and young people do when they follow their own ideas and interests in their own way and for their own reasons.’
Quoted in Department of Culture, Media and Sport ‘ Getting Serious
Our vision is to create and maximise the environment across the District where children and young people can freely exercise their right to play, have fun and enjoy themselves on their doorstep, by providing a balanced range of inclusive, quality things to do and places to go.
We aim to raise awareness and assist the development and sustainability of quality and inclusive play and free-time opportunities across the Forest of Dean, taking account of the unique natural environment.
Finding our what local people feel about play.
During the writing of the Strategy a great deal of consultation was undertaken and we especially wanted to know what parents, children and young people felt.
‘The fun bit of being a parent. Enjoy it and your kids will too.’
‘It allows parents/carers and children to meet on a different level – the kids can be the leaders!’
We listened to what young people said.
In general, children and young people felt that things were changing in the area to increase their play opportunities. However, more could be done to improve provision. A key message reflected in the research was the need to LISTEN to children and young people, not just in an ad-hoc way, but consistently and on an on-going basis. So that’s what we did and what we intend to continue doing!
The following top priorities were highlighted:
-Attitudes to Play and Free-time
-Trained Volunteers and Play Workers
-Structured Vs Unstructured
- Natural Play
To find out more:
We have an easy to understand leaflet which gives you an introduction to the strategy Play Strategy Leaflet
For a full version of the strategy with action plan and for an introductory leaflet please see PLay and Freetime Strategy