A celebration event has been held to mark the success of the Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) programme in Knowsley.
The HAF programme, operated in Knowsley by the Council and One Knowsley and delivered by organisations across the borough, provides free activity places for children and young people during the Easter, summer and Christmas Holidays.
Cllr Graham Morgan, Leader of Knowsley Council, joined members of Knowsley’s Cabinet, representatives from the borough’s community and voluntary sector, One Knowsley and providers of activity places at the event in Court Hey Park.
The HAF programme provides free activity places during the Easter, summer and Christmas school holidays to those eligible for a means-tested free school meal but is accessible to all children and young people across Knowsley.
Activity sessions take place throughout the borough and range from sports sessions to arts and crafts, through to excursions to destinations such as Knowsley Safari Park. All sessions include a free, healthy meal.
Knowsley has around 8,500 pupils eligible for a means tested free school meal and the take-up of activity sessions has been significantly higher than the national average.
During the summer 2022 HAF programme in Knowsley, 25,514 of the available 27,055 available activity places were filled across the borough, representing a take up of nearly 95%.
The HAF scheme will return during the forthcoming Easter holidays which start from 3 April 2023.
Cllr Shelley Powell, Cabinet Member for Communities and Neighbourhoods, said: “The HAF programme has been a real success in Knowsley, providing a real boost to families who may be struggling with the cost of living and affording opportunities that may otherwise have been unavailable to many children and young people.”
Cllr Margret Harvey, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said: “Children and young people who have taken part in the HAF programme in Knowsley have been able to access fun activities and a free, healthy meal during the school holidays. Activities have taken place in all corners of the borough and provided some unforgettable experiences for those taking part.”