Mattel Recognized for its Leadership by California State Legislature for International Day of Play Initiatives

mattel international day of playJune 12, 2024 | The state of California has joined the United Nations in proclaiming June 11 as International Day of Play, recognizing the importance of play in enhancing the well-being of children and communities globally. The California State Senate passed the resolution on June 10, made possible through the collaborative efforts of Mattel and Senator Ben Allen’s office. The Toy Association™ is also listed as a supporter of the measure.

“Mattel is honored to serve as ambassadors in championing International Day of Play in California, said Steve Totzke, president and chief commercial officer of Mattel, in a press release. “Our purpose is to empower generations to explore the wonder of childhood and reach their full potential and we are proud to support this inaugural moment to help provide children with the opportunity to embrace their fundamental right to play and thrive.”

The resolution commends California-based toy companies for their innovative contributions to enriching children's lives and encourages communities to promote and celebrate play on June 11 and throughout the month. After the resolution's presentation, Mattel shared International Day of Play kits to legislators — including an information sheet from The Genius of Play™ — which will later be donated to Save the Children.

Mattel also hosted a series of activations worldwide, including a donation of 100,000 toys and books from the Mattel Children’s Foundation to Save the Children; co-branded promotions at Target; and play kit builds at company locations nationwide, which resulted in more than 150,000 toys being donated to more than 7,000 children on June 11.

“The Toy Association applauds the state of California for recognizing the global significance of the International Day of Play and the vital role that play has in nurturing the creativity, health, and overall well-being of children,” said Ed Desmond, executive vice president of global government & regulatory affairs at The Toy Association. “By prioritizing and protecting play, we invest in a brighter, healthier future for our communities.”

The Toy Association celebrated the first-ever International Day of Play yesterday by uniting the toy community through its Toy Foundation to donate tens of thousands of brand-new toys and games, worth close to $900,000, that will bring the power of play to nearly 75,000 children in need across the country. The Toy Association’s initiatives, combined with the individual philanthropic and celebratory efforts of toy companies throughout the toy industry, helped to mark the inaugural day of celebration.

International Day of Play creates a unifying moment at global, national, and local levels to elevate the importance of play as central to children’s learning and well-being — ensuring time to play, space to play, and support for quality play is prioritized. The international awareness day calls for policies, training, and funding to integrate play into education and community settings worldwide. Click here for more informational about the International Day of Play.