As restrictions lift, getting back to ‘normal’ is simply out of reach for many families and children, who are lacking the funds and resources to reconnect with friends and family, play sport, visit attractions and play outdoors. At the same time, Oxford Brooks University research highlighted that lockdown restrictions have had a detrimental impact on children in particular, as reduced play and more sedentary behaviour has the potential to damage their long-term development.
In response, In Kind Direct, the UK charity that distributes large scale donations of products to charitable organisations, has set it’s sights on supporting Save the Children and the #SummerOfPlay initiative aimed at helping children get mentally and physically active this summer. At it’s heart it aims to give children the summer they deserve.
Over 100,000 products have been donated to In Kind Direct so far, which they will be distributing to the 7,000 UK charitable organisations in their network across the summer. Products include arts and crafts, board games, stationery, lunch boxes, backpacks, jigsaws, books, toys, sports kits, balls and outdoor play equipment – all to support schools, charities and community groups with their holiday activities and aiming to address the startling statistics:
- Almost a quarter (23%) of children revealed they’re playing less sport and being less active than they used to be
- 77% of charities in In Kind Direct’s network are seeing declining health and wellbeing in their areas
- 76% of respondents from In Kind Direct’s charity network report people they support are feeling increasingly isolated and lonely
In Kind Direct has joined forces with a number of incredible donating organisations and brands such as; Flying Tiger Copenhagen, PZ Cussons, TCC Global, Micro Scooters, Amazon, Mitre Sports and Hasbro – all have generously donated a wide range of products that will have an incredible impact and enable charitable organisations to do so much more across the summer holidays.
Activity specialists Merlin, Junior Adventures and Big Game Hunters, have also donated generously, offering free placements at theme parks, opportunities to attend activity camps and chances to win outdoor play equipment – helping to boost physical and mental wellbeing at a time when it has been negatively impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
Rosanne Gray, In Kind Direct CEO, comments: “It’s heart-breaking to see the statistics of how much the pandemic has impacted children’s mental and physical development. Not having access to simple pleasures like a football or puzzles which many families take for granted has stopped many kids from being active and social. We cannot let this pandemic continue to impact physical and mental wellbeing for our younger generation, which is why we are encouraging any businesses with products or services to donate and make a difference over these summer months.”