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Children's Commissioner

Children’s Commissioner says half a million children stand united in demand for more play

April 4, 2022

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This month, the Children’s Commissioner addressed hundreds of teachers and leaders across the education and sports sector at Youth Sport Trust’s annual conference. The conference, hosted in Coventry, confirmed a commitment to play and creating safe places for play.

Dame de Souza emphasised the importance of play and sport in children’s lives with analysis from The Big Ask Survey. The survey had shown that children were desperately in need of more opportunities to play, to which De Souza committed her office to provide. Particularly, her office would be working to remove the barriers to play that children experience across England.

CEO of Youth Sport Trust, Alison Oliver, discussed the launch of the new strategy with its three key objectives. The focus would be on:

  • Enhancing resilience in young people with special regard for disadvantaged children
  • Balancing out the impacts of the digital age and the need to be physically active
  • Transforming society’s attitudes to sport and physical fitness


She added:

“Children are spending their lives trying to fit in rather than finding belonging and fostering it for others. Sport has a huge role to play in addressing this. First of all, by listening to young people and through an inclusive mindset we can help everyone find belonging in sport.”

“Then through sport, we can foster the attitudes and skills which help young people find and create belonging elsewhere in their lives. By tackling physical and emotional wellbeing through human connection we really can change lives and build brighter futures.”

For more information on the plans, see here.

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