Whether you think it’s controversial, or just me being silly; fact of the matter is when it’s hot outside, it’s almost impossible for our kids to play on a playground that has no shade.
We can lather our children in sunscreen, give them adequate clothing and pop a hat on them (which most of us do); but still it doesn’t help the fact that often the sun is so hot it’s impossible for our kids to play on a playground.
It’s time our councils took this matter seriously and started providing shade over our children’s playgrounds.
Here’s the latest article on the matter (published 9th January 2018): https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/shade-shortage-playgrounds-putting-kids-risk-sunburn-skin-cancer-researchers
I started this conversation about a year ago and was met with a lot of support, and a little resistance. Those against having some kind of shade for our playgrounds said things like:
“You should just learn to put sunscreen on your child”
“Put a hat on your child you lazy parent”
“Just don’t take them to the playground in the heat of the day, it’s not rocket science”
“Why should the councils do your job for you as a parent”
“When I was growing up we had no shade and we are fine”
Honestly the list of comments goes on and I was a little discouraged by the human race when I read things like this.
Why build a playground that cannot be used at ANY time of the day? Why subject our children (or ourselves) to the incredible heat of the sun?
Obviously protecting our children from sun burn / skin cancer is the obvious reason to have a shade sail, but it’s also to do with the fact that we need to give our kids a reprieve from the heat.
HERE’s a new article from TVNZ:
PLUS as parents who want to take their kids outdoors, it is NO FUN sitting in the burning hot sun.
NO FUN AT ALL.
So yes, I’m starting this conversation again.
There are plenty of playgrounds in Australia that are built with AMAZING shade sails, which proves it can be done.
There are also a lot of playgrounds in New Zealand that have shade – I’ve been to a few of them and it’s amazing; but there’s MORE that don’t have any kind of shade at all.
When I talked about this a year ago, I did approach the Auckland City Council but was also met with resistance – with them saying they “do their best” with new playgrounds.
Seriously?! THAT IS NOT ENOUGH.
Because new playgrounds are being built with little to no shade – really unacceptable for us here in New Zealand. Especially given the skin cancer statistics here; skin cancer is by far the most common cancer affecting New Zealanders
Here are some links to previous articles I’ve written about this topic, feel free to read these:
- Rant Time: Playgrounds
- Facebook Commenters: My Final Rant
- Banana Boat Sunscreen Issue
- Myths & Statistics About Our Sun
The Cancer Society of New Zealand support my call to have more shade, so let’s get it talked about more!
WATCH THIS SPACE! I’m teaming up with Jacquelyn from Kiwi Play Safe and we’re joining forces to talk about playground shade AND fencing! WE can make a difference because we have a voice – so we are looking out for our children and the future generations!
What do you think about this topic? Do you think shade sails (or shade) should be provided for our children at playgrounds across the country?