Success for Christmas holiday clubs as over 2,000 children attend

Published date
News category
Worcestershire Children First
Water sports at Lakeside on the University of Worcester campus

Over 2,000 children and young people took part in holiday activities over the Christmas holidays.

Ready Steady Worcestershire – Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) Programme enables children and young people in receipt of benefits-related free school means to attend school holiday activities and experiences during Easter, summer and Christmas.

The programme creates free places for eligible children to attend, with a focus on enriching activities with a healthy meal and snacks included.

Research has shown that the school holidays can be pressure points for some families so the HAF programme encourages children to access out-of-school activities to eat well, get active, have fun and make friends.

Worcestershire Children First and Worcestershire County Council partnered up with 47 providers to deliver the Winter 2023 HAF programme, which also included specialist clubs for children and young people with special educational needs or disabilities (SEND). Activities ranged from sports, arts and crafts, performance, outdoor adventure, water sports, swimming, dance, animal care, yoga and life skills.

2,300 children and young people attended which included 1,781 in receipt of free school meals and 675 with SEND.

Feedback from families taking part in Christmas holiday activities included:

“My son came home every day happy, belly full and enjoyed his day”

“Gives some stability to a busy and over stimulating time of year for the children that need it. It helped my son feel calmer and more settled.”

“My two children participated in the Lakeside activities provided by Worcester University, it was fantastic. The kids had plenty of fresh air and were able to do things they’ve not done before.”

Councillor Tracey Onslow, Worcestershire County Council's Cabinet Member with Responsibility for Education said: “It’s brilliant that so many children and young people are benefiting from the HAF Worcestershire programme. We’re so grateful to all the providers who get involved to put on such a varied programme of activities across the county.”

Families and schools can now sign up to the Easter programme of activities via the county's Holidays Activities and Food Programme website.