Easter holiday activities for children abound - column by Cllr Patricia Bradwell OBE, deputy leader of Lincolnshire County Council

The Easter holidays are now underway and children across the county are taking a well-earned break from their studies.

HAF is offering a wide range of holiday activities to schoolchildren. (Image: Adobe Stock)
HAF is offering a wide range of holiday activities to schoolchildren. (Image: Adobe Stock)
HAF is offering a wide range of holiday activities to schoolchildren. (Image: Adobe Stock)

Easter and the other school holidays can be a pressure point for some families because of increased costs and reduced incomes, with some children more likely to experience an ‘unhealthy holiday’ in terms of nutrition and physical health. That is particularly true at this time of rising living costs.

So, the government has asked local authorities in England to provide a Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) programme for children during the Easter, summer and Christmas breaks funded by the Department for Education.

The programme is open to children and young people receiving benefits-related free school meals.

It provides eligible children with a wide range of engaging activities, as well as free healthy meals plus snacks. In addition to this, being with their friends aids the young people’s emotional wellbeing and social development.

During the past year, Lincolnshire County Council has been working with schools, sports providers, leisure centres, youth clubs, a theatre company, early years settings and kids’ clubs to organise a network of fun and exciting holiday clubs across the county for primary and secondary-aged children.

Each club is unique and offers a wide variety of enriching activities, depending upon the venue. Examples of the activities on offer during the Easter break include DJ skills, gaming, cooking, arts and crafts, sports, drama, beatboxing, animal encounters, an Easter treasure hunt and kite flying.

In the Sleaford area, there is a creative camp at Riverside Church Hall, run by Total Insights Theatre, while Eslaforde Day Nursery is offering a range of activities including a nature walk and park visit, as well as a cinema day.

Both clubs have proved very popular, with places being quickly booked up.

There are also clubs at Little Lockets Nursery in Great Hale, First Timers Pre-School in Wellingore and many other locations around Lincolnshire.

You can find further details on the HAF programme, including a list of participating venues and how to book your child on to a club, at https://www.lincolnshire.gov.uk/school-pupil-support/holiday-activities-food-programme

Please be aware that places are limited and offered on a first-come-first-served basis.

On the website, you can also sign up for our HAF newsletter, which will mean you receive information on the clubs available during our upcoming summer and Christmas programmes.

Hundreds of children have already taken part in our previous programmes, and the feedback from families has been fantastic.

So, if your family is eligible for the programme, don’t let your child miss out.