South Ribble Borough Council once again set to support hundreds of families with free activities for children during October half term
In direct response to the ongoing cost of living crisis the Council have funded additional activities to support families and children in the school holidays.
Free activities such as swimming, gymnastics, gym sessions and tennis at the borough's leisure centres are available and information about the programme and how to book can be found at www.southribble.gov.uk/haf.
The programme - HAF Plus - is an add on supported by the Council to the Holiday Activity and Food Programme (HAF) which is a national, Government funded scheme which provides activities and healthy food in the main school holidays to children on benefits-related Free School Meals (FSM).
The national HAF scheme has been running in South Ribble since 2021 and is only available in the Summer, Christmas and Easter holidays, but the council wanted to ensure that families could also access the support in October and February half terms. The council have allocated over £30,000 to the October and February programme to ensure that even more families can be supported. In South Ribble, children who aren't on Free School Meals can also attend the programme when there is availability.
Councillor Mick Titherington, Cabinet Member for Health, Wellbeing and Leisure said, "School holidays can be a particularly difficult time for some families due to increased food and childcare costs and reduced incomes and I'm so pleased we are able to extend the support to families during October half term.
"We're here to support our community and we do not want to see families struggle. Please, if you are a parent, take a look at the free activities we've got on offer and come along.
"We have been delivering the HAF Programme since Summer 2021 and have filled over 5,000 spaces on our sessions. This summer holiday was the biggest ever programme of events, with 5 weeks of holiday activities for ages 4-16.
"Our team received some wonderful comments from both children and their parents after the summer holiday activities, and with the cost-of-living crisis we wanted to ensure that families benefit from locally based leisure activities in half term breaks as well as the main holidays."
For information on October Half Term HAF at South Ribble Leisure Centres, please see www.southribble.gov.uk/haf