Play is so important to all of us, especially children. Article 31 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) recognizes the right of the child to rest and leisure and to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to the age of the child.
Despite this, play tends to be one of the most neglected of all rights of a child. Increasing urbanization and the commercialization of play influences the way children engage in play. For many children in both rich and poor countries, child labour, domestic work or increasing educational demands reduce time available for play
ITLA was proud to support the International Play Association in the development of General Comment 17 on the right of the child to play. ITLA’s goal is to have World Play Day recognized on the UN calendar in support of General Comment 17.
World Play Day events are held in over 40 countries around the world and is recognized on the UNICEF South Africa Calendar of events.
World Play Day is celebrated in over 40 countries
World Play Day 2021
The theme for World Play Day 2021 is ‘Playing is healthy’. We look forward to seeing what great events you can hold on May 28 2021.
Share your event
As with last year, we’ll be discussing World Play Day on the ITLA Facebook discussion group and sharing online with #WPD2021. Please send us your photos and reports.
World Play Day Resources
The World Play Day logo is available to download. Download logo
World Play Day 2021 Booklet: Download English Version
World Play Day 2021 Power Point Presentation: Download Power Point Presentation
France has designed a poster template to share with everyone. Please feel free to use them in your own environments with acknowledgements to ALF and the illustrator. Download poster
History of World Play Day
ITLA formally agreed to celebrate World Play Day at the 8th ITLA conference in Tokyo in 1999. May 28th was chosen in recognition of the day the International Toy Library Association was formed in 1987.
The first World Play Day was celebrated in France and Korea in 2000. France already had a play festival but converted it to World Play Day. Korea held an event for children from an orphanage and other play groups and held a fund raising dinner for adults.
The World Play Day founder is Dr. Freda Kim.
World Play Day Themes
Each year World Play Day has a theme that captures the spirit of the day.
- 2021: Playing is healthy
- 2020: Be Safe, Play At Home
- 2019: Play is a Right
- 2018: Free Play
- 2017: Sustainable Play
- 2016: Play for all ages
- 2015: Play is fun