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1000 Play Streets to aide COVID-19 recovery

1000 Play Streets to aide 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.

Play 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.

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.

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

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.

Minister for Recreation, Sport and Racing, Corey Wingard, said the South Australian government is proud to be partnering with Play Australia and saying Game On to bringing quiet residential roads to life through the 1000 Play Streets movement.

"1000 Play Streets will see more communities connecting and children of all ages having fun and getting physically active – key objectives of the Marshall government’s Game On initiative," Minister Wingard said.

"We encourage local governments in SA to contact Play Australia to get involved in this wonderful program. Together, lets open our streets for play!"

Now is the time for Australian Local Governments to start planning for community Play Streets to help reconnect communities facing isolation through COVID-19 and open quiet residential roads as important places for our children to play.

Play Australia welcomes Local Governments across Australia to join the 1000 Play Streets movement today and download the free toolkit at: www.playaustralia.org.au

*Findings from 25 attendee survey responses; 40 interviews with Play Street supporters; and observations at Play Streets.