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Free Holiday Clubs for Hard-Pressed Families

Thousands of children in South Tyneside are set to benefit from free holiday clubs to keep them fed and entertained during the Christmas holidays.

Funded by the Department for Education, the schemes are being delivered by the Council and its partners. Places are free to those aged between five and 16 who receive free school meals or whose families are experiencing financial hardship.

The clubs will offer a range of fun activities for children and young people to enjoy with their friends over four days of the Christmas holidays. In addition to providing a nutritious hot meal, the clubs will offer enriching activities such as festive Zumba, mud kitchens, climbing walls, ice skating and a trip to the Customs House panto.

Those taking part are asked to observe the latest Covid advice at the time of the activities, including regular hand-washing, wearing a face mask if age appropriate and taking a lateral flow test before attending. Anyone who is feeling unwell or symptomatic should stay at home.

The Government's investment in the Holiday Activities and Food programme builds on the Council's successful rollout of holiday clubs and the sterling work of food banks who provide help to those in need all year round. 

Councillor Adam Ellison, Lead Member for Children, Young People and Families, said: "More than 4,500 children and young people took part in the Holiday Clubs over the summer and with lots of positive feedback from those who took part.

"We know that those who were already struggling have been the hardest hit by the pandemic, and we recognise that school holidays can only add to that challenging and expensive time for families.

"These clubs deliver on the Council priority of supporting families and giving all our children the best start in life."

The clubs are being run at various venues throughout the Borough and must be booked in advance as soon as possible. Bookings will close four days before an event so that catering can be arranged. To find out more about the clubs or to book a place visit www.southtyneside.gov.uk/holidayclub or email HAF@southtyneside.gov.uk

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