The Park of the Children’s Rights

The Park of the Children’s Rights is an innovative playground also accessible to children with temporary or permanent disabilities, designed by 7 internationality famous designers.

The Fondazione Riccardo Catella conceived the project in 2007, as an expression of children’s right to play as contained in art. 31 of the International Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNICEF 1989), which refers to “the right of the child to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to the age of the child “, and also with the aim of achieving social integration between differently abled children, as well as integrating genuine works of design into a public park.

The 7 natural rights of the child, chosen amongst those which could easily be translated into objects, were allocated, by drawing lots, to the designers taking part in the project, who came up with designs on the following themes:

  1. Antonio Citterio: Right to silence
  2. Matalì Crassett: Right to smells and fragrances
  3. Stefano Giovannoni: Right to wildness
  4. James Irvine: Right to idleness
  5. Gabriele Pezzini: Right to get dirty
  6. Franco Raggi: Right to the street
  7. Tobia Repossi: Right to use of hands

Prototypes of the items of play equipment were built to the designers’ drawings through the Foundation’s technical partnership with firms specialising both in the production of sensory and scientific toys and in the manufacture of furniture.
The “Rights of the Child Pathway” containing the prototypes of the pieces of playground equipment, set up in the grounds of the Riccardo Catella Foundation, was officially opened on 16 April 2008, to coincide with the Milan International Furniture Show. Until 15 June 2008, all the children visiting the playground, and their parents, were able to view and explore the prototypes and submit their comments.

Another of the project’s aims was to ensure that the Park of the Children’s Rights would be suitable for replication in different locations, with a modular design concept adaptable to the size of the area available.

Currently, 5 of the items included in the Park of the Children’s Rights have received certification and have been put into production by the industrial partner firms. Some of these have now been installed in the grounds of the Fondazione Riccardo Catella. In agreement with Comune di Milano, during 2011 the pieces of playground equipment designed under the project which have been put into production were permanently installed in a park adjoining the Foundation, creating a playground built on a new concept for Italy, also accessible to differently abled children.


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