School holidays can be particularly difficult for some families because of increased costs, such as food and childcare, and reduced incomes.
The length of the summer holidays can cause more complexities for some families.
This summer, free holiday clubs will be available to help with this issue. Evidence suggests they can have a positive impact on children and young people, and they work best when they provide consistent and easily accessible activities, for more than just breakfast or lunch, and when they involve children (and parents) in food preparation.
The theme for the holiday clubs is Summer 4-4-4, eligible children across the borough can access four-hour sessions, four days a week, for four weeks at no cost to parents/guardians (children are eligible if they receive a free school meal). This programme is funded by the Department for Education.
The holiday clubs are also available to any children not eligible for free school meals, who can pay to attend.
Slough Borough Council is working with a range of providers (private, voluntary, independent, and charities) to offer places where children will be able to eat more healthily over the school holidays; be more active and be safe and have fun. Our providers for the summer programme are: Get Active, Art Classes, Slough Music Service, Antz Kidz, Kidz Enterprise Ltd, Arc Pre holiday programme, TreeTops Holiday Clubs team, Sports Collective, Aik Saath, and Fit for Sports. See our webpage for activities offered by each provider as this information is being updated daily: https://www.slough.gov.uk/HAF
Michael Jarrett, Associate Director, Children and Families, said: “The past year has been difficult for families, with many people’s employment affected by the pandemic. Slough children have not been able to participate in as full a range of fun activities outside of their homes. The council and voluntary organisation partners are organising a variety of sessions, including healthy food and activities over the summer through the Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) Programme.
Summer 4-4-4 is free for children who receive benefits-related free school meals. Eligible children can choose to attend a range of activities in different venues across the town and places are also available for paying parents too!”
Councillor Christine Hulme, lead member for children’s services, lifelong learning and skills, said: “There are some great activities available across lots of different holiday clubs this summer depending on your child’s interests, with Summer 4-4-4 which is free for children who receive benefits-related free school meals. There is something for everyone from Aik Saath who will be teaching young people how to cook with their friends to Fit for Sports, all providing a healthy meal and lots of fun for children.
“The past year and throughout the pandemic have been a challenge for a lot of families in the borough and we hope that through the Summer Holiday Activities and Food programme cost will stop being a barrier to eating well and having fun. Of course, children who aren’t entitled to free school meals can pay to attend and join in the exciting activities offered.”
For more information visit: https://www.slough.gov.uk/HAF or please call Slough Family Information Service on 01753 476589.