Last week, Waterford City and County Council’s Community team, through its Healthy Ireland program, arrived with its Playful Street program for residents of Markey Drive and Highfield Dungarvan.
The Playful Street programmes are being rolled out throughout Waterford county with over eighteen areas signed up already.
This was Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. Joe Conway’s second playful street event. “I was privileged to have been asked to come to the Playful Streets evening in Dungarvan. I met a great bunch of children and their enthusiastic parents, all of whom responded engagingly with Waterford City and County Council’s espousal of the initiative.
“The main thrust of Playful Streets is to get children to play together safely outdoors – and leaving the couches, TVs, phones and video games to one side. In doing so, we will build a stronger, more inclusive, child-friendly community. The Council is aiming to have many more such events all over the city and county and it’s a fantastic way of community groups working on a project and continuing the overall emphasis of pride of place.”
Cllr. Thomas Phelan echoed the mayor’s sentiments, saying “As a local councillor it was great to see the playful streets initiative in action in Dungarvan. I really enjoyed the spending time with the residents in Highfield and Spring Markey Drive. It was a pity the mayors team bet mine in the tug of war, but it was great craic.
“These days there’s lots of concern about the children playing in front of phone screens and computer screens so it was great playful streets gave them the opportunity to play in front of their green and street instead. We have plenty of community groups in the Dungarvan area and there is always a helping hand or advice for new groups establishing themselves.”
Organising resident Karen Phelan was delighted with the response from the community “We didn’t expect such a response, the street came alive with activity and people came from everywhere. It was a really good idea not only for the children but the parents and families in the area to get to know each other a little better.”
Eoin Morrissey from Waterford City and County Council Community Section added, “We have been amazed at the response to this project in the Summer. To date over 1,500 children have taken part with hundreds of adults attending and hopefully adding to their social connectivity within their community. The more people know of each other and what’s going on the more opportunities they are for development.”