Spreading Joy Through Play in Africa

We’re thrilled to share some highlights from a transformative trip to Rwanda and Uganda. Our Chief Energy Officer, Priyanka Handa Ram, and Chief Opportunities Officer, Eashwar Ramesh made a trip recently to connect, collaborate, and catalyse change within the early childhood development space.

Here’s a glimpse of the trip:

1. Let’s Play Leadership Workshop at the African Leadership Network Conference

One of the key highlights was the engaging “Let’s Play Leadership” workshop hosted at the African Leadership Network Conference. This interactive session focused on the power of play in leadership, offering insights on setting intentions, reconnecting with values, and nurturing team growth. Testimonial videos from enthusiastic participants further attest to the workshop’s impact, underscoring the significance of play in leadership development. Some participants from the workshop had these reflections to share:

2. Collaboration with Child’s i Foundation in Kampala

Meeting with our dear friend and mentor, Christopher Muwanguzi, and the dedicated team at the Child’s i Foundation was a pivotal moment. Discussions revolved around how our innovative Parent PlayBox could significantly bolster their family-strengthening programs, aligning with their mission to eradicate orphanages across Uganda. Spending time with a remarkable foster mother, championing neurodivergent children and those with special learning needs, reinforced the belief that every child deserves a loving family and ample support, such as the Parent Playbox provides. The feedback received during activities with the Parent PlayBox was invaluable, guiding us to refine and enhance its impact.

3. Addressing the Urgent Need: Play-Based Learning Evaluation Tool

Returning to Kyaka II Refugee Settlement was a heartwarming reunion, reuniting with familiar faces and collaborating with Children On The Edge. The focus was on training facilitators and assessors in the implementation of our newly developed Play-based Programme Assessment. This tool, co-developed to evaluate playful teaching and learning in early-years programming, is now in use in Uganda and Botswana. An ongoing external review aims to validate its reliability, relevance, and effectiveness, marking a significant step forward in evaluating play-based learning.

Identifying a critical gap in the early learning sector, the development of our evaluation tool, along with Children on the Edge, stemmed from the need to authentically assess the quality of playful teaching and learning in a culturally relevant and child-friendly manner.

This tool promises far-reaching implications and insights, not just for our organizations and stakeholders but for the broader sector. Stay tuned as we prepare to share our learnings and implications soon!

Our team’s recent travels were rich with collaboration, insights, and meaningful connections, reaffirming their commitment to fostering impactful change in early childhood development. We’re excited to continue sharing updates and insights from our journeys as we navigate this space together.

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