National Regional Government Initiatives Countries and regions that take the

National regional government initiatives countries

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National & Regional Government Initiatives Countries and regions that take the necessary steps in understanding their approach to developing and supporting children’s play environments reap the benefits of well designed, long lasting, manageable and enriching places for their children. Both the National Children’s Bureau and the Belfast City Initiative, discussed here, exemplify some of the steps and support structures Manitoba’s Provincial and Municipal governments could consider implementing. Innovative Play Structures Research Project August, 2001 Page 19
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The National Children’s Bureau (NCB) in the United Kingdom is a government agency set up to deal with a wide range of childhood rights issues such as health care, education and play. The sub-organization of NCB associated with developing and maintaining children’s play environments is the Children’s Play Council (CPC). Set up in 1998, CPC is an alliance of national, regional and local organizations. CPC’s Charter for Children’s Play (1992) is the most important contribution. The Charter clearly defines the rights and needs of children, outlining goals that any regional or local organization can adopt as a starting point for play place development or redevelopment. In addition, the CPC provides a forum for the exchange of new ideas and examples in their free bimonthly journal, Playtoday . Making this literature available to everyone adds to the distribution of information required for change. Most importantly, the CPC has an ongoing research and policy development program for play and play provisions in England. Some of the other studies and resources undertaken to better support the creation of quality play environments are: surveying practitioners and uses for their ideas and observations; directly auditing children’s use of current playgrounds for a better understanding of their needs and desires; and converting these findings into policy and process guidelines for implementation in playground development. Awareness and promotion of current play ideas at a local government level is a key aspect of developing meaningful and appropriate playgrounds in our cities. Innovative Play Structures Research Project August, 2001 Page 20
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For example, the City of Winnipeg has comprehensive safety and maintenance guidelines for its playgrounds and parks. However, an overall vision and policy for play and the support materials that allow communities and government to come together in the collaborative process of building them do not exist. Currently, these issues are dealt with on a project by project basis and are dependent upon the expertise and attitudes of the administrators in charge of individual projects. One current example of a civic government that has taken up the issue of children’s play is the Belfast City Council: Belfast City Council is committed to working towards enabling the right of every child to play by working with local communities, public agencies and voluntary organizations to enable
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