May 20-23, 2014 | Istanbul, Turkey
The 19th International Play Association Triennial World Conference was held between May 20-23, 2014 with the theme of “Access to Play,” hosted by the Active Living Association. The conference took place with the theme of “Access to Play” and it aimed to: put children’s right to play – laid down by national laws – onto Turkey’s public agenda; to ensure it is recognized as a human right taken into consideration in decision making processes; and for new academic studies to be solicited. As well as the national agenda, the conference is an international forum of exchange of ideas, knowledge and practice and will continue IPA’s focus on the recent UN General Comment on Article 31 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
As part of the conference, there was an exhibition area which brought together NGOs, publishers and companies, workshops for conference participants, and Istanbul citizens which took place at an outdoor playground with different playground modules, a Play day, and various play events. The Conference hosted 300 participants especially academicians, specialists, opinion leaders, NGO representatives, practitioners and students who are related to play from all around the world and Turkey.
This is a timely opportunity to create and share knowledge on play following the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child adoption of a General Comment on article 31 in February 2013. The General Comment was a useful tool in harnessing worldwide energy to promote the children’s right to play as it provides guidance to ‘States Parties’ (governments of the 192 countries which are signatories to the Convention) with regard to the provisions of the Convention in relation to play and recreation, rest and leisure, cultural life and the arts.
IPA conferences are relevant to a wide range of people with an interest in children’s play, including practitioners (such as playworkers and pedagogues), policy-makers, children’s rights advocates, play space designers and academics. The 2014 IPA World Conference was hosted by the Active Living Association, an NGO promoting active play in Turkey and their conference flier is attached for more background information.