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World Play Day 2020

May 28, 2020

The World Play Day is celebrated in over 40 countries around the world. Article 31 of the United Nations Conventions on the Rights of the Child (CRC) recognizes the right of a child to rest and leisure, and to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to the age of the child.

Despite this, play remains one of the most neglected rights of a child. ITLA was proud to support the International Play Association in the development of General Comment 17 on the right of a child to play. It is ITLA’s goal to have World Play Day recognized in the UN calendar in support of General Comment 17.




World Play Day

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History of World Play Day

The World Play Day is held on the 28th of May to commemorate the day International Toy Library Association (ITLA) was formed in 1987. During the 8th International Toy Library Association Conference in Japan in 1999, Dr. Freda Kim, a British teacher and play advocate, suggested the World Play Day. The first World Play Day was celebrated in France and Korea in 2000. France already had a play festival which was converted into World Play Day.

Dr. Freda Kim captures the spirit of this day when she advocates, “Allow a child to play to-day. Watch a child play to-day. Play with a child to-day.” The International Toy Library Association also suggests making it a day for various generations to interact in playful ways in their daily lives. Dr. Kim in 2011 further expressed the need for play to include children especially in disaster and war zones. She believes that “while adults have understanding of these disasters and are able to verbalize, children need to act out the tragedy and deal with the trauma in their lives through play. They must be encouraged and allowed to play even in their devastating conditions. By allowing children to play you are helping them to a healthy adulthood.”

World Play Day Themes

Each year has a different theme that is guided by the essence of the day.

2019, Play is a Right


Free Play


Sustainable Play


Play for all Ages


Play is fun


May 28, 2020
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Toy Library Association Kenya


Kibera, Nairobi
Nairobi, Kenya + Google Map

Ayany Estate, Kibera constituency,
Nairobi, Kenya

  +254 721 279 032