Play Scotland Hub

Our Vision

Formed in 1998, Play Scotland is working to ensure that all children and young people in Scotland have daily access to diverse and quality play opportunities that meet their individual need at home,  in early years and childcare settings, at school and in the community.


Children have a right to play and need time, space, permission and opportunities to #playeveryday

Play is vital for children’s health, wellbeing and happiness.


About Us


Formed in 1998 to support the Child’s Right to Play and make children’s play rights a reality in Scotland.

Our Mission is to increase awareness of the importance of play to the development of children and young people in Scotland.

To ensure that all children and young people in Scotland have equal access to diverse and quality play opportunities that meet their individual need at home, in early years and childcare settings, in school and in the community.

Play Scotland’s work is underpinned by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child Article 31 which states:

“State parties recognise the right of the child to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to the age of the child and to participate freely in cultural life and the arts.”

For a copy of UN Convention of the Rights of the Child click here.

We work with in partnership with many organisations, in communities,  schools, early years settings and public bodies to share best practice and support research to promote better understanding of the importance of  play.


Priorities for Play Scotland

  • Delivering the National Play Strategy Vision and Action Plan  
    Play Strategy Vision

    We want Scotland to be best place to grow up.  A nation which values play as a life-enhancing daily experience for all our children and young people; in their homes, nurseries, schools and communities.

    Scotland’s Play Strategy seeks to improve the play experiences of all children and young people, including those with disabilities or from disadvantaged backgrounds. It aims to ensure all children and young people can access play opportunities in a range of settings which offer variety, adventure and challenge.

    All children must be able to play freely and safely while learning to manage risks and make choices about where, how and when they play according to their age, stage, ability and preference.


  • Embed the importance of play indoors and outdoors into the lives of all Scotland’s children and young people to give access to #playeveryday


  • Ensuring that Scotland’s children and young people reach their full potential. 


  • Developing Strategic Resources to support the Play Sector in Scotland.


  • Workforce Development of the Playwork Sector.


  • Research into Play Provision in Scotland (space to play, time to play, funding for play)


What is the Problem?

  • Lack of Play Space and Mobility
  • Childhood Obesity, Mental Health Problems and Bullying
  • Young People Unable to Assess and Manage Risk
  • Young People with Poor Social Skills and lack of Ability to handle Conflict and Cultural Difference


Play is Part of the Solution

The benefits to children and young people and the community from a strategic approach to play are profound. Children will:

  • Enjoy better physical, emotional and mental health
  • Develop social skills and responsibility
  • Appreciate the environment
  • Understand risk and challenge
  • Grow identity and self esteem
  • Participate in sports, arts and culture
  • Be less likely to offend and engage in anti-social behaviour

Play Scotland Aims

  • Delivering on the action plans of Scotland’s National Play Strategy
  • A Regional Infrastructure to grow and support the Play Sector throughout Scotland
  • Support develop and resource opportunities for Play in Scotland
  • Lead contributor in the Professional Development of Play and the Play Workforce in Scotland
  • Initiate and increase research and academic based information on the benefits of Play, including Free Play, Risk management, Challenges, Play-Friendly Community Spaces
  • Administer and Support Scotland’s play Charter

Play Scotland Objectives

  • Promote Article 31 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child- the Child`s right to Play
  • Work with Scottish Government to ensure that Play is prioritised within Local Authority Planning
  • Work with Strategic Partners to deliver good quality Play opportunities in diverse settings for all children and young people in Scotland
  • Promote local Play Associations and build clusters, networks and forums to sustain “free play opportunities”
  • Promote equity, inclusion and diversity in Play provision
  • Provide continuous professional development opportunities  for Playworkers
  • Work with relevant Sector Skills Councils to ensure Employers needs are met in the Play Sector
  • Promote research which demonstrates the benefits of Play
  • Commission research into Play Provision in Scotland