Monday, December 11, 2017

Play Africa and Spin Master Partner to Launch South Africa's First Toy Movement

Play Africa handed out toys to young children for Toy Movement


WONDERFUL: Great joy for the children all round. Photo: Lucky Thusi.

JOBURG – Play Africa and Spin Master hosts South Africa’s first Toy Movement and will donate toys to 44 000 children around the country.


Mark Segal from Spin Master and Gretchen Wilson-Prangley, the CEO of Play Africa, excitedly await the launch of the Toy Movement.

Play Africa and Spin Master, a global toy company, hosted South Africa’s first Toy Movement to provide thousands of disadvantaged children with toys.

The event, which was hosted at Constitution Hill on Friday 1st December 2017, saw hundreds of children from four different schools gathering to enjoy a morning of play and entertainment.

Gretchen Wilson-Prangley, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Play Africa, a non-profit organisation which encourages children to express themselves through play, said that the partnership between Spin Master and Play Africa was a perfect fit. Spin Master was looking to sponsor a toy movement in South Africa and Play Africa works with children to ensure their right to play.


Boys excitedly watch how to use their new toys at the Toy Movement.


Schoolchildren receive their toys from Spin Master at the Toy Movement.


PAW Patrol characters entertain the children at the launch of the Toy Movement.

Through Spin Master’s global Toy Movement campaign, the organisations will give thousands of toys to disadvantaged children around the country.

“Many South African children lack toys and other learning tools that can help stimulate a range of child-initiated, open-ended play activities which bolster cognitive, physical, social and emotional development,” said Wilson-Prangley, adding "In order to honour children and their right to play, we need to respond to neuroscience research that consistently proves the importance of play and stimulation in children’s healthy development and make provisions for play in every child’s daily life.”.


WELCOME: Reuben Phasha, heritage and education manager, Constitution Hill makes a welcoming speech at Women’s Jail. Photo: Lucky Thusi.

The launch of the Toy Movement campaign had support from Just Fun (Pty) Ltd Toys, Nickelodeon South Africa (SA), Ty Inc, which manufactures plush toys, and Value Logistics. About 300 children from local schools, including Parktown Public School and Nkosi’s Haven, which helps care for mothers and children with HIV/Aids, were present.


WOW: Drizzle didn’t dampen the high spirited Angel Ndlovu (9) from Rosemead Primary School. Photo: Lucky Thusi.

The children received toys, meals and enjoyed live entertainment from the characters from Nickelodeon's hit series Paw Patrol. A further 44,000 toys will be distributed to hospitals, orphanages, schools and community centre’s across the country during the holiday season.

Mark Segal, Spin Master’s Executive Vice President (EVP) of Finance and the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) said, “Spin Master’s vision is to make life more fun, and based on our position in the toy industry we feel it’s our responsibility to help children in need.


Schoolgirls explore their new toys.


Schoolgirls learn more about their new toys.


Schoolgirls receive their gift packs during the Toy Movement.

“The Toy Movement has the goal of bringing inspiration and the opportunity to learn, grow and play to children living in challenging situations and that’s what we hope to inspire. Many of us have roots in South Africa, so this is a particularly gratifying initiative.”

Children will receive the toys through partner organisations, including 73 schools and crèches, five hospitals, seven orphanages, and dozens of NGOs, including Afrika Tikkun, The Ernie Els Centre For Autism, South Africa, Ikageng Itireleng and Smart Start.


LOVE IT: Children enjoy the puppets’ company. Photo: Lucky Thusi.

Children are full citizens under South Africa’s Constitution, but South Africa faces enormous challenges when it comes to providing the children with safe play areas and early learning tools, such as toys.

According to UNICEF, only 29 per cent of South African children have access to safe, child-appropriate play areas in their communities. Unequal distribution of safe play areas and toys erode children’s right to play.


GREAT TEAM: Chi-way Yuen (GM Spin Master Asia, Hong Kong), Mark Segal (CFO Spin Master, Toronto, Canada) and Gretchen Wilson-Prangley (CEO of Play Africa). Photo: Lucky Thusi.

This, according to Gretchen Wilson-Prangley, CEO of Play Africa, a non-profit, social enterprise organisation championing inclusive public learning for the country’s most vulnerable.

With this in mind, Play Africa has partnered with leading international children’s entertainment corporation, Spin Master Corp, and through its global Toy Movement campaign, the organisations will give thousands of toys to disadvantaged children in the country.

Toy Movement has completed missions all over the world, including in Mexico, Israel, Jordan and Turkey and 2017 mark its first year in South Africa.


TOYS: ‘Ava’ interactive hedgehog (left) was given to girls and Star Wars drone to the boys.

More Nick: Spin Master Considering Making A 'PAW Patrol' Feature Film!

Original sources: Rosebank Killarney Gazette, Southern Courier.
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