Initiative to create a summer of fun for Southend youngsters

Charities, schools and local businesses are being asked to come forward and help provide a summer of fun for children and young people in Southend.

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council are looking for local activity and healthy meal providers to run summer sessions as part of the Holiday Activities and Food programme (HAF), following a positive start over the Easter holidays.

Now the council wants to create a tailor-made programme in collaboration with children and young people, including a range of fun and engaging activities, and a healthy meal. The sessions will be eligible school-aged children and run at least four hours a day, four days a week, over four weeks in the summer holidays.

Carol Parker, HAF project lead at the council, said: “I am delighted that we received such positive feedback from the Easter HAF sessions, we are now in the midst of arranging the summer sessions for families.

“We understand that the school holidays can bring additional hardship to families, and we have opportunity to provide those eligible families with extra support during this time.

“Once again, we are looking for local providers to give the children and young people access to fun and active activities along with healthy meals over the school holidays.

“I hope that our community providers, schools and charities will get involved in order to increase diversity of the activities and be part of this great programme for Southend-on-Sea.”

The Easter sessions generated some great feedback. One provider said: “P really enjoyed going to the Easter club, he couldn’t wait to tell his teacher he has been! He is looking forward to coming back and has already asked me when he can join the providers club as he is so excited. P enjoyed it all, he loved the egg hunt, scavenger hunt and playing swing ball.”

Another said: “Throughout all the sessions the children had the opportunity to make their own lunch/dinner and enjoy healthy snacks such as apples, bananas, oranges and pears. They also had the chance to make their own healthy deserts using lots of fresh fruits such as strawberries, blueberries and yoghurts.”

There are several ways local businesses, schools and charities can get involved, from delivering the session to providing the venue. If you would like to find out more, please follow the link to complete the expression of interest form by Monday May 17.


Mick Ferris

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