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Holiday times can be challenging for families, in particular those who are vulnerable or on a low income. The lack of free school meals, regular social contact and play opportunities can create stress and pressure for families, often leading to  financial, social and nutritional challenges.

‘Up to an estimated three million children risk being hungry in the school holidays. This group comprises over a million children growing up in poverty who receive free school meals during term time, as well as an estimated two million who are disqualified from free school meals because their parents work for their poverty.’ (Hungry

Holidays, All-Party Parliamentary Group on Hunger (APPG), April 2017)meals and more

With funding from Brakes Meals & More, Family Action is delivering the Holiday Hub programme, which aims to address poor social inclusion, family nutrition and wellbeing, and financial strain.

‘Most useful is learning about all different recipes without it being so costly, and the meals are really easy to make.’

‘He was picky at first, but has tried new healthy foods.’

About Holiday Hub

Holiday Hub clubs operate across the country – from Wigan to Coventry and from London to Nottinghamshire. Holiday Hub supports families in the school holidays by providing meals and opportunities for family bonding through eating, learning and playing together. As well as taking part in a wide range of fun activities and enjoying quality time together, families learn about nutrition and keeping fit and healthy

Impact

Feedback from families highlights that Holiday Hub has helped them:

  • make healthy and cost-effective meals
  • improve family relationships
  • socialise with other families
  • try new activities
  • get to know the local area better
  • improve their wellbeing.

Find out more about the impact of Holiday Hub.

‘Due to struggling with anxiety, I don’t socialise at all and tend to stay in the house … I have socialised with staff and other families.’

‘It was brilliant. We all enjoyed it as a family.’

Sharing new learning

Family Action arranges focus groups, training sessions etc to enable Holiday Hub practitioners to share good practices – and to gain new ideas for their clubs. In 2019, for instance, staff and volunteers have been invited to workshops focusing on Engaging families through play and on having Fun with food.

The Holiday Hub team has shared learning and resources from pilot projects we have led that focus on developing families’ knowledge, understanding and interest in:

We have also shared learning and resources from larger projects, designed to pilot different models of holiday activities and food provision. For example, in 2018 we received DfE funding to pilot the Families, Food and Fun programme across England.

Get involved

Please get in touch with us using the details below if you are interested in:

  • volunteering to work within one of our clubs
  • supplying food, resources or other in-kind support for our clubs
  • setting up a Holiday Hub club
  • finding out more about Holiday Hub
  • providing support to the Meals & More programme.

Holiday Hub Members’ Area

If you are a delivery partner, please visit our Members’ Area or contact us using the details below for:

  •  the latest Holiday Hub documentation (eg Holiday Hub bulletin, Information and Resources pack)
  • dates for the next focus group sessions
  • support with planning and delivery (eg recipes, portion sizes, food suppliers, sourcing volunteers, training for staff).

Supporting families in Stockton and Staffs

We’re delighted that Public Health Stockton has been funding Holiday Hub in Stockton-on-Tees. Download our Family Action – 6 weeks of summer report. This highlights the impact of our holiday activities and food (HAF) work during Summer 2019.

Staffordshire Children’s Centres have been busy delivering holiday food and activities sessions during Summer 2019. Read our Staffs summer report to find out more.

FamilyLine

FamilyLine is a free service available to support parents and carers manage the challenges of parenthood via telephone, text message and email. Whether it’s emotional support or practical advice on any aspect of parenting or broader family life, call: 0808 802 6666, text: 07537 404282 or email: familyline@family-action.org.uk

Contact us

Louise Reilly (Holiday Hub Co-ordinator)
M: 07714 076 184
E: louise.reilly@family-action.org.uk
www.family-action.org.uk/holidayhub/

Contact Louise to find out about clubs in your area and how to refer families.

Find out about our other Holiday Food and Activities programmes.