Life is virtually at a standstill and children have not been able to play outdoors due to Covid-19.
This has affected children’s holistic development and overall wellbeing. Moreover, some have placed play within the limiting context of laru-laro lang.
Advocates continuously address the issue that children’s right to play is important as it is one of the basic rights of children as contained in Article 31 of the United Convention on the Rights of the Child.
The Philippine Play Coalition (PPC), a network of organizations which Unilab Foundation, Council for the Welfare of Children, World Vision Philippines, Unang Hakbang Foundation, Kythe Foundation, Tukod Foundation and Educo Philippines are actively involved in, has been working to ensure that every child will not miss the experience of play even amid pandemic times.
The National Play Advocacy Week 2020, celebrated last 16 to 22 November 2020, reached over 10,000 children via offline and online platforms, 300,000 Filipinos through online platforms, and engaged 150 partners to participate and conduct play activities.
The local governments of Iloilo City, Lapu-Lapu City and Zamboanga City participated in the celebration.
This 2021, Unilab Foundation is continuously strengthening its play advocacy under its program, Bayanihan for WellBeing, through the distribution of Resiliency Play Bags.
These play bags aim to spark hope, harness creativity and develop resilience and coping skills among Filipino children who were not only strained by the coronavirus outbreak, but were also victims of the recent calamities.
A Bayanihan for WellBeing Resiliency Play Bag is composed of toys like sipa and kickball, which are intended to help children release tension; cape and mask which they can design, allowing them to identify their strengths and make them feel like superheroes; and writing and coloring sheets to encourage their creativity and help them express their emotions.
For more details, visit the Bayanihan for WellBeing Facebook page.