The importance of play; a guide for carers

Play is considered the universal language of children. It is a vital part of their upbringing as it is through play that children are able to use their creativity and develop their imagination, dexterity, physical, cognitive and emotional strength. It is through play that children learn to engage and interact with the world around them, and it also teaches many important social skills such as sharing, taking turns, self discipline and tolerance of others. In play, children are in charge of what they are doing and in control, allowing them to learn to manage their feelings. When they build things in play, they are also building confidence in themselves.
It is essential to make time for children to play and you can do this by arranging specific play time for children. Give them a safe place to play – indoors or outdoors, and provide them with some play things such as building blocks, play dough and paints. You can join in play time with children if you are invited and stop when children prefer to play their own games, and you can follow their lead and resist the temptation to direct, criticise or to turn play into a lesson. You can also play with children through reading and storytelling.

The Wishing Well foundation

The Wishing Well was established in 2010 to offer children in out-of-home care, such as foster care and residential care, a range of healing and treatment options usually not accessible as a free therapy in mainstream health.

The Wishing Well raises funds to enable children and young people to access developmentally-appropriate and trauma-informed treatments shown to be highly effective in dealing with severe trauma and neglect. These therapies respond to the unique needs of each child and young person.

The Wishing Well is a not-for-profit incorporated charity organisation, established and managed by people seeking to improve outcomes for children and young people in out-of-home care and their families. The Wishing Well recognises the importance of the act of giving. We recognise the significance of the participation of community members and all donations are most appreciated.

The Wishing Well operates ethically, effectively and empathically with a view to achieving quality outcomes and a satisfying working environment.

Support the Wishing Well

The Wishing Well uses its funds to help children in need access all manners of developmentally-appropriate and trauma-informed treatments. The Wishing Well takes referrals for any child/young person in out-of-home care in NSW.  Applications are assessed by qualified personnel and on a case-by-case basis.  The decision to fund an application is affected by the following:

  • Funding availability
  • The support the child/young person has to access the proposed therapies
  • The capacity and willingness of the Carer Household to support the child/young person
  • Assessment, which recommends and supports the proposed therapy as relevant to meeting the particular needs of the child/young person

The Wishing Well gratefully receives donations, funding and resources through bequests, corporate partnerships, fundraising events, grants, online donations and other fund raising activities. Money donated to The Wishing Well enables traumatised children access to healing therapies. Please see our website for more information:

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