‘Holiday hunger’ is now an all too familiar phrase; with the absence of the free school meal during the school holidays and increasing financial pressures, more and more families struggle to both entertain, but more importantly, feed their children over the six-week summer holiday period.
‘The Welcome Network’ are very proud of the work they have achieved over the recent summer holiday, with regards to helping and supporting families either experiencing or vulnerable to holiday hunger. Across Cheshire West and Chester, they hosted a range of free, themed activity days, providing a free nutritious meal to all those who attended. Foodbank vouchers and emergency food parcels were also available at each event, for those families needing additional support.
Holiday activity days that were held at locations in Ellesmere Port. These were delivered working alongside ‘The Well-being High Street’ project (http://www.healthboxcic.com/project/wellbeing-high-street/) with the themes ‘Let’s go to the seaside’ and ‘Pirates and Princesses’. As well as a hot meal, the days offered a range of both indoor and outdoor activities, from healthy cooking, arts and crafts and hula hooping! Similarly themed events were also held in Neston, which were popular with both parents and children alike! It was lovely to hear not only how much the events were enjoyed by families, but how it had relieved some of the financial strain brought on by the summer holiday –
‘The free activity day and the meal has been a brilliant lifeline in a difficult time and just felt like ‘a fun day out’ for the kids and myself…’
‘When the holidays are so expensive, it is great to have such an amazing free event with a meal provided!’
Building on their success from last year, the Blacon community also held a range of weekly, holiday activity days across the summer period! Themes included ‘Lets Get Moving’ and ‘Explore Outdoors’ and found an average of over 100 families attending each of these events, with brilliant feedback:
‘The activities were very helpful to me due to everything else costing a small fortune.”
‘The food was delicious!’
‘It’s got the kids out over the summer holidays and the adults and children loved it’
We are very thankful to all of the organisations, including West Cheshire Foodbank, that supported and volunteered with us, making the holiday activity clubs the success that they were! We hope to deliver many more activity days in holidays to come and continue supporting as many families as possible in the fight against holiday hunger!