In support of National Play day on August 4th, The Association of Indoor Play has pledged it support to the Summer of Play Campaign run by Save the Children in association with Play England, Play Scotland, Play Wales, PlayBoard NI, playfirstuk and Playing Out.
At a time when 51% of children are playing out with friends less than before the pandemic, according to current research by Save the Children, AIP is standing with hundreds of businesses, charities and councils from all over the UK whom have come together this summer to enable all children, in all our communities, to have space and time for play this summer, both indoor and outdoor. We want this summer to be a time when children can enjoy fun, friends and freedom and indoor play offers just that, not only on rainy days.
The Association members will be highlighting the plentiful summer activities and events running in their centres and also in their outdoor spaces.
Indoor playcentres are recognised by the Government and Parents as cornerstone to children’s social and physical development and mental health and are critical in getting children pre-school ready. Indoor play is a stepping-stone in socialisation prior to a child entering structured education. Indoor play centres offer COVID-secure spaces for free play in purpose built stimulating equipment. Many of the Association’s indoor play provider members have enhanced their play offerings adding new interactive technology, role play and baby sensory.
Why indoor play?
Play is stealth fitness – ‘exercise in disguise’. It’s about children ‘getting fit, without knowing it’. Play must be recognised as the primary form of exercise for children – we don’t take them to gyms, we take them to play, and healthy kids generally equate to healthy adults, thereby reducing the cost of care to the NHS in future. Children benefit so much from indoor play and we are the part of the solution to the issues we are seeing as a result of the pandemic.
Indoor play centres are not just a place to “let off steam” - play allows children to use their creativity while developing their imagination, dexterity, and physical, cognitive, and emotional strength. Play is important to healthy brain development. It is through play that children at a very early age engage and interact in the world around them.
The Association of Indoor Play (AIP) is the leading trade association for the indoor play sector in the United Kingdom. We are a not for profit organisation set up to be the voice of the Indoor Play Sector. The Association was formed in at the start of the COVID pandemic by a group of seasoned national indoor softplay providers with over 150 years of combined indoor play experience between them with the aim of creating a specific and targeted vehicle to represent the smaller operators in this specialised sector
AIP is a Member of UK Hospitality, with whom we act to advise on government legislation for indoor play, we are accredited with Visit England/Visit Britain “Go to Go” scheme and are Members of IAPPA - The Global Association for the Attractions Industry.
Association of Indoor Play - Maria Cantarella | Operations Director
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Save the Children Media Team - firstname.lastname@example.org