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Ghana joins world to mark first-ever International Day of Play

June 13, 2024

Ghana has joined the rest of the world to mark the first-ever International Day of Play.  

The International Children's Fund () in a statement said the first-ever International Day of Play, which was observed on 11 June, marks a significant milestone in efforts to preserve, promote, and prioritize playing so that all people, especially children, could reap the rewards and thrive to their full potential. 

It said beyond mere recreation, it was a universal language spoken by people of all ages, transcending national, cultural, and socio-economic boundaries; adding that this shared passion fosters a sense of community and national pride, and it also fosters resilience, creativity, and innovation in individuals. 

Reverend John Ntim Fordjour, a Deputy Minister of Education, and a team from the joined UNICEF and children from the College of Education Demonstration School to play. The Deputy Minister shared his excitement as he reminisced on his childhood days. 

Play is a universal language spoken by people of all nations and transcends all barriers and culture.  

The statement said the day was commemorated to raise awareness about the critical role of human development.  

It said some important facts on play include 41 per cent of children had been told to stop playing out by either parents or other adults such as neighbours. 

Whereas 71 per cent of children say play is important because it makes them happy, 58 per cent say it helps them make friends and have a good time with others.
 
It was estimated that 160 million children worldwide were working instead of playing or learning. 

It said Play was not just another thing to do, play helps in cognitive ability, communication skills, improved and emotional resilience – play gives children the foundation that they need to survive and to build a better future. 
 
The statement said Play-based learning was also an effective approach to engage students actively in the learning process.  

It reiterated that it made learning more enjoyable and relevant, which motivated and supported the retention of information.  

It said play was a fundamental right of every child as enshrined in Article 31 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. 

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