Holiday activities and support planned for families over the spring break

29 March 2021

Cheshire West and Chester Council are working alongside partners and local community groups to provide support to families over the upcoming spring break.

Funding has been secured through the Government’s Winter Grant Scheme to provide schools with funding to help support families who have a child in receipt of benefits related free school meals. 

Schools will decide how best to allocate the support to eligible families whose children attend their school. Any families that need help should contact their child’s school or, if they are in financial hardship, the Council’s HELP scheme. 

Edsential Community Interest Company will be coordinating a range of exciting holiday clubs over the spring break, providing families with nutritious food and activities thanks to funding from the Departments for Education’s Holiday Activities and Food Programme Funding.

Edsential’s local partnership with the Council, The Welcome Network and Cheshire West Voluntary Action will provide funding for over 50 community, voluntary and faith sector organisations, supporting over 5,000 children across west Cheshire. 

Activities sessions will include adventure play, dance, HIIT workouts, gardening, yoga, forest school, art and craft, online activities and more.

Details of all the activities can be found on Edsential’s website. Cathy Lord headteacher at Victoria Road Primary School in Northwich, said: “Our families have been lucky enough to be able to access funded holiday clubs last summer due to grants applied for by the Council. I feel this has been a great support to the families and children, ensuring that the children have access to nutritional meals and exercise throughout the holidays. It is especially important since lockdown, where the children need, more than ever, to get outside and be active. Both healthy food and exercise are essential for positive mental health and offering clubs in the holidays ensures that children are stimulated and are safe too.”

Food support for residents is available all year round, including during the school holidays, through the Council-backed Welcome Network. 

Local community groups, currently providing food and support across the borough, have been mapped on the Welcome Network website, so that residents can access the information in one place.  A full list of all the support available to families during the spring break can be found on the Council website. Helen Brackenbury, Director of Early Intervention and Commissioning at Cheshire West and Chester Council, said:  “The last year has been difficult for many families and although some restrictions have been lifted, we understand that lots of families will still be struggling during this time. Through our local network of community groups there are some fantastic activities planned to keep children and young people entertained and a wide range of support to help families that may be facing difficulties.” 

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