Book your place on the Easter holiday activities and food (HAF) programme
Families eligible for free school meals are being encouraged to book a place for their child on one of the many Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) clubs running across Lancashire this Easter.
The HAF offer at Easter is four days of provision for each child that is eligible, each day runs for a minimum of four hours, this includes a meal.
To get a free place on the HAF programme, your family needs to be in receipt of the benefits that make you eligible for free school meals. You do not have to actually take up the offer of a free school meal. There are a small number of discretionary places offered to children not in receipt of free school meals but still in need of a free place, your school will be able to help you find out if this applies to you.
Now entering its second full year following the pandemic, we are building on the success of last year to make the 2023 HAF programme the most successful yet.
We are working with a variety of delivery partners, which are running more than 200 HAF clubs in Lancashire.
The clubs will cover a wide variety of activities, including football, tennis, rugby, boxing, gymnastics, swimming, paddle boarding, fishing and skiing. For those not so interested in sports there is art and crafts, drama and dance, computing and escape rooms. There are also lots or traditional holiday clubs offering a wide range of activities and trips out.
In 2022 a total of 136,214 individual HAF places were filled by children and young people over Easter, Summer and Christmas.
At least 13,057 children attended a club at least once. Of those, 11,803 were eligible for free school meals, 32% of all those eligible in Lancashire. While this is higher than the national average of 26%, we know that there are many eligible families out there who could access this programme.
County Councillor Cosima Towneley, Lancashire County Council's cabinet member for children and families, said: "We know that not all children who are eligible will take up a place but we would urge parents to consider the benefits of taking part.
"The Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) programme has proved a fantastic opportunity for children to enjoy a variety of new experiences and create new friendships. We're working with partners to build on the success of previous years to make our 2023 HAF programme the best it's ever been and ensure as many families take advantage of this offer.
"I would strongly encourage families to look what's on in your area and consider booking a place when invited."
Many of our district now have a central booking system. However, if you live in Preston, Hyndburn, Wyre and Fylde, your child's school will issue you with a code and you will use this to book a place online.
For more information about our Easter HAF programme, including how to book a place, visit: https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/children-education-families/school-holiday-activities/