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As a Playworker you’ll be responsible for supporting and facilitating opportunities for children to play.

Being a Playworker

Working as part of a team, your individuality such as culture, interests or needs and skills can make a difference to children’s lives. A playworker team is where children see relatable adults who they can trust and rely on in the community where they live.

You will help to create a safe, welcoming, diverse and inclusive play environment for children and young people aged three to 12 years old. The prime focus of playwork is to support children to play freely.

You’ll encourage children to use their imagination and make opportunities for them to create new and different spaces for playing; places big and small, inside, or out, that are attractive and offer freedom to play in a safe environment. A key skill of playwork is learning when to get involved and when to leave children to it.

If you already work in the childcare sector you might look at this role as an opportunity to further your skillset and gain further qualifications. You can become a Senior Playworker with the extra responsibilities might include:

  • supervising volunteers and playworkers
  • handling budgets
  • representing the setting in meetings with other professionals.

About the workplace

Your location of work may include a wide range of settings, such as:

  • out of school childcare
  • staffed adventure playgrounds
  • peripatetic playwork projects
  • holiday playschemes
  • nurseries
  • primary schools
  • hospitals
  • prinsons
  • community projects.

You’ll work as part of a team, liaise with parents and advocate for children's right to play in their community. This means, observing, reflecting on your practice and using the knowledge you gain to find ways to increase and extend children's play.

Allowing children to explore through play and providing them a safe place to do so

Getting started as a Playworker

To be successful in this role you'll need:

  • a caring and patient nature
  • to be enthusiastic, creative and take on board new ideas
  • a willingness to let children take the lead
  • effective communication, including verbal and listening skills
  • confidence around children and adults
  • to create new opportunities for playing
  • to be able to adapt to changing situations
  • to encourage children’s independence
  • to be able to assess risks involved and intervening where necessary.

The Playwork Principles help explain the roles and responsibilities.

Required Qualifications

Playwork qualifications are needed for anyone working with children of school age in a regulated after-school or open access setting. In some cases, you may need a playwork qualification as well as a childcare qualification.

Find the required or recommended qualifications for this role with PETC Wales.

Those working in full day care, sessional day care, creche facilities or as a childminder would need to visit the Qualification Framework on Social Care Wales for all the qualification requirements.


You might want to consider the Introduction to childcare programme that covers the essentials you need to start working in childcare.

To find out about additional training opportunities in playwork get in touch with Play Wales and Clybiau Plant Cymru Kids Clubs.

Play Wales

Play Wales is the National Charity for Children’s play. It provides support, advice and guidance on playwork training and qualifications in a wide range of settings.

Clybiau Plant Cymru Kids' Clubs

Clybiau Plant Cymru kids ' Clubs is the national organisation for Out of School Childcare Clubs in Wales and is experienced at developing and delivering workshops and qualifications to improve the quality of care, play and learning provided to children in clubs.

Find a job in care

If you’re thinking of a career in care, take a look at our jobs board to get an idea of the type of roles available.