Council approves huge post-lockdown Summer of Play for Aberdeen’s children and young people

Aberdeen City Council’s Education Operational Delivery today (Thursday 3 June) approved an unprecedented Summer of Play to support the wellbeing of children and young people across the city who have been impacted on by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Council is committing £418,000 secured from the Scottish Government to the ambitious programme which allows children and young people to reconnect with friends and the outdoors during the school holidays as lockdown restrictions continue to ease.

The programme will see a huge range of activities, completely free to users across the city from sports to science, arts and crafts to interaction with the city’s wildlife and green spaces.

The activities are based on a consultation undertaken by the Council with children, young people and their parents giving feedback on the fun activities they most missed during lockdown and the fun activities they most wanted to get back to when restrictions eased.

The priorities for access to the programme are those, including low-income families, who have experienced the most significant negative impacts associated with extended periods of isolation and lack of participation in normal activities during the pandemic.

Aberdeen City Council’s Education Operational Delivery Convener, Councillor M. Taqueer Malik said: “I’m absolutely delighted that we are on our way to delivering the biggest Summer of Play for young people in the city’s history and help children make up for time lost during lockdowns in doing the things they love doing once again.

“From football and swimming to learning the ukulele in the Marischal College quad; adventure and dance to spending time in nature with our countryside rangers; the great Staycation and arts programmes to science experiments at the Aberdeen Science Centre; creative learning to kayaking in Rubislaw Quarry and overnight camping…there really is something for everyone during the school holidays.

“We are looking to make every moment count for each and every one of children and young people, regardless of their circumstances, and giving them a summer to remember, using the great natural assets and green spaces we have on our doorstep and the expertise we have at our disposal in the form of our staff and our partner organisations.”

Local authorities across Scotland have each been tasked with providing opportunities for children and young people to:

  • Re-connect with friends, peers, wider community and the outdoors, as well as with trusted adults;
  • Play, be active and enjoy themselves. Activities should be as wide ranging and inclusive as possible to cover all interests, backgrounds and circumstances and shaped around a theme of fun and play with a view to providing positive experiences.

The Summer of Play is underpinned by a set of guiding principles which include, co-creation co-creation with children, young people, and families; building on existing services, assets and knowledge of what works and partnership working and coordination.

A webpage giving full details of the programme and how to register for activities will be going live soon.