Gala Retail has announced its sponsorship of children’s activity camp Starcamp for 2022.
With the well-being of children in mind following the pandemic and lockdown restrictions over the last two years, today (24 March) Starcamp with Gala Retail launched National Confidence Day and a free online show for children.
“Gala Retail is proud to sponsor Starcamp and support the delivery of a free, fun online workshop for Irish children on National Confidence Day,” said Gary Desmond, CEO of Gala Retail, sponsor of Starcamp.
“This is designed to encourage confidence and self-esteem.”
The retail group also highlighted that it recently teamed up with Starcamp to conduct a survey of more than 1,500 parents from across Ireland, to ‘assess the impact that Covid-19 and subsequent restrictions have had on Irish children of primary-school age’.
The survey results revealed that ‘confidence’ ranked above ‘academic excellence’ and ‘sporting skills’ as the top trait that respondents wish for their children, with 43% of respondents rating confidence as the most desirable trait.
Almost 50% of respondents feel that their children have been less sociable since the introduction of restrictions, and a staggering two thirds of children (65%) have become more reliant on devices and technology since the pandemic began.
Some 91% of parents surveyed said that they felt that group activities such as drama, sport and music are ‘very important’ for their children’s development.
‘Parents Have Spoken’
Speaking about the results of the survey and the decision to launch National Confidence Day, Aideen O’Grady, founder and director of Starcamp, said, “Parents have spoken. The response to this survey indicates the level of concern for their children following the pandemic.
“Confidence is what they desire most for them, and following a two-year period of restrictions of varying levels, it is unsurprising that this survey reveals the impact that these restrictions have had on their confidence and sociability. Almost all opportunities to develop confidence and social skills became unavailable at a crucial stage of their development.
“Confidence is a human right for every single child, bar none. It is the greatest building block for our next generation, and we need to nurture it in them. Kids with confidence are more likely to try new things, think well of themselves, take pride in what they do, and achieve and believe in themselves – invaluable gifts to take into adulthood. We don’t want the children of ‘Covid years’ to lose out,” O’Grady added.