As part of the Nature Play Program, the ACT Minister for Sport and Recreation, Yvette Berry, allocated $25,000 to nine local community organisations to inspire the community to swap screen time for green time.
Ms Berry awarded the Gungahlin Defence Families Playgroup with a $1,875 grant for new equipment for nature-based play including wet weather suits, magnifying glass kits for play-based learning, and two educational sessions at Mulligans Flat/Jerrabomberra Wetlands.
The Canberra Mathematical Association will use $5,000 to design, publish, and distribute a suite of 10 ‘Maths in Nature’ lessons that can be used by educators across Canberra in any local, natural environment.
The Woden Valley Child Care Centre has been awarded $5,000 to build a tree house around a giant tree in their play area. The tree house will include ropes, a climbing wall, ladders and ramps, making it the perfect place for active, imaginative play.
The kids at the YWCA Conder Early Childhood Service can’t wait for $5,000 worth of new outdoor furniture. They’ll soon be able to play in a new sandpit, enjoy water tables, cook up a storm in the mud kitchen, and work on their gardening skills in the four new garden beds.
The ACT Sports Minister believes enjoying time in nature is important to health and well-being. She hopes the grants will encourage families to become more active.
“Although these grants typically support activities for children, I also hope they will provide motivation for more grownups to get outside, have fun and be active,” she said.
“Research shows that opportunities for outdoor play and engagement in nature are essential to the health and well-being of children, helping them to develop to their full potential. Participation in nature play has the ability to improve a child’s cognitive flexibility and creativity, boost self-esteem and improve resilience, so we need to ensure there are plenty of opportunities for Canberrans to participate in active recreation and play.”
Click here for more information on Nature Play CBR.
Nature Play CBR Grants Program recipients:
- Canberra Mathematical Association ($5,000)
- Gungahlin Defence Families Playgroup Inc. ($1,875)
- Woden Valley Child Care Association Inc. ($5,000)
- Sticks and Stones Nature Playgroup ($1,108)
- Holy Spirit Early Learning Centre ($1,977)
- ACT Playgroups Association Inc. ($2,050)
- Community Services #1 Incorporated ($1,990)
- Young Women’s Christian Association Ltd of Canberra Early Childhood Service ($5,000)
- Girl Guides Association NSW ACT Region ($1,000)