What We Do

Play Scotland is the lead organisation for the development and promotion of children and young people’s play in Scotland. We work strategically to make the child’s right to play a reality so that all children can reach their full potential and be able to confidently inhabit an inclusive public realm, as well as help shape child friendly communities.

Play Scotland works to:

  • Raise awareness of play as a powerful builder of happy, healthy, capable children which can help them realise their full potential.
  • Deliver the Play Strategy to demonstrate in innovative and participatory ways that Play benefits families, early learning and childcare settings, schools, communities and society.
  • Deliver Getting it Right for Play with Community Planning Partnerships to build capacity at many levels so that there is a better understanding of how through play children drive their own development, resilience and skills.
  • Influence and support the implementation of the Play Sufficiency Duty and guidance and related tools to increase co-creation opportunities, and with play based interventions, to build children’s sense of identity and close family relationships through stronger connections within communities.

Our achievements

Established in 1998, Play Scotland is a membership organisation, with over 1100 members and a social media reach of over 3 million. Play Scotland campaigned for the national Play Strategy and established Scotland’s Play Council to support the implementation of the Strategy. Play Scotland is leading the review of the Play Strategy for Scotland for the Scottish Government.

Play Scotland campaigned for amendments to the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019, including a play sufficiency duty to tackle social and spatial injustice and inequalities.  This Act places a statutory duty on local authorities to undertake play sufficiency assessments as part of their strategic planning and for children to be consulted on local place plans. We are supporting the development of guidance for Play Sufficiency Assessments as part of the implementation of the duty.

In partnership with other organisations, we successfully lobbied for and welcome the Scottish Government’s commitment to incorporate the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child into Scots law by 2021. These developments represent a game changing moment for children and young people in Scotland.

Priorities for Play Scotland include

  • supporting national developments around children’s human rights including the play sufficiency duty and the incorporation of the UNCRC into Scots law
  • continued and extended focus on inclusion, specifically around disability and poverty
  • more attention to the right to play of older children and the connection to wider policy areas
  • consideration of the use of digital devices and online media and how these relate to understandings of play.

You can read more about what we have done in previous years  from the link below.

Annual reviews

Annual reviews

Report and reviews of Play Scotland activity, year by year