A summer holiday club has been helping to tackle isolation for schoolchildren in Salford and bring families together.
Throughout the summer holidays, children and their parents attended the Marlborough Road Academy holiday club in Broughton, where they were able to tuck into a free hot meal and enjoy fun activities with their friends, including sports, dance and arts and crafts.
The newly-formed holiday club was set up by Salford charity The Life Centre, on behalf of the Salford Food Network, and delivered in partnership with the Broughton Team Churches, which includes St James Higher Broughton and St Clement with St Matthias Lower Broughton, along with Marlborough Road School and Audacious Church.
Housing provider Salix Homes provided the club with £500 to help fund the food and activities on offer as part of its Springboard community grant programme. According to the organisation, this fund aims to support local projects that boost community spirit, promote health and wellbeing, reduce isolation or improve the environment.
Mum Sahira Chaudhrey, attended the holiday club with her three young children. She said: “As a parent it’s difficult to find activities over the summer to keep children entertained. There is a lack of local activities, money can add up quickly and things can get pretty tight. I was extremely grateful to be able to take my children to a place where they can join in with a variety of activities and get a great meal at the end of it.”
Salix Homes also provided £600 additional funding through its Springboard programme to enable the children and their parents, along with other local families, to enjoy a day trip to Knowsley Safari Park to mark the end of the summer holidays.
Saimah Alam, who also attended the holiday club with her children, said: “The club has been a huge help to me. I have felt quite isolated in the past as it can be hard to find things to do for the kids all summer and this can turn out really expensive, so it’s great to be able to get out of the house and enjoy activities together as a family.”
Ben Cruickshanks, neighbourhood manager at Salix Homes, added: “For some people, the school holidays are about having fun with your family and friends, and visiting new and exciting places, but sadly this isn’t always the case for many local families.
“The school holidays can increase the financial pressures on families, and they may also experience social isolation as trips out and activities can soon add up.
“This is why Salix Homes is so proud to support the holiday club which has ensured that local families can still make sure their children enjoyed a fun-filled summer holiday with their friends without having to worry about the additional financial pressure.”
The initiative also received support from Salford Community Leisure, The Rio Ferdinand Foundation, Tesco and Salford Council’s catering service City Wide.