play:groundNYC operate a 50,000 square foot adventure playground on Governors Island, and works with communities to establish their own neighborhood playgrounds and adopt play initiatives. By providing professional development and consulting services, and training a new generation of playworkers, play:groundNYC is reimagining the urban environment as a place for all children to play, create and explore, regardless of demographic status.
The modern-day urban environment is not kid-friendly, and many children are suffering from the adverse effects of growing up in an environment that does not meet their basic needs for free outdoor play. Children today spend more time playing indoors on devices and less time playing outdoors than any previous generation. Their activities are predominantly mediated by adults, in managed classrooms, scheduled after-school programs, and on fixed structure playgrounds.
Self-directed outdoor adventure play is absolutely essential for the overall well-being of all children. Experiencing the broadest range of play teaches children how to socialize, work together, and solve problems creatively. Outdoor play of the sort experienced at play:groundNYC's site on Governors Island, helps kids develop an understanding of and a sense of agency within their environments. playgroundNYC builds and stewards play spaces that improve the health and mental development of kids.
play:groundNYC works to improve the state of play for children everywhere. In doing so, we are addressing major physical and mental health problems being faced by so many children growing up in the urban environment. Through increased sense of agency, connection to the local natural environment, and strengthened social ties, children with greater access to self-directed outdoor play spaces will experience positive outcomes in both their physical and psychological health.