Southwark Children and Family Centres

7th October 2020

We wanted to find out what children and young people taking part in Lambeth and Southwark’s Summer of Food and Fun got up to over the summer, so we spoke to Katie and Sasha who run the Southwark Children and Family Centres about the activities they ran as part of the programme.

How many children did you serve during the 6-week summer holiday?

Across our centres, we served a total of 382 children.

In your opinion, what was the best or most beneficial / important component of the summer holiday programme?

We were able to reach our most targeted/vulnerable families to provide weekly food during these challenging times. Children were excited and looked forward to receiving the food and the welcome packs.

The Take and Make boxes were a great resource to empower parents and children to cook healthy meals together. The boxes consisted of a range of diverse ingredients, with easy to follow recipes cards. The boxes were also sustainable due to portion sizes, with each child receiving their own individual box.

We were able to have a greater insight into the families’ environment and wellbeing’ through face to face contact when we delivered food parcels and the Take and Make boxes.

What was your greatest success from the programme?

The programme enabled us to provided weekly food for families, who are or may be at risk of food insecurity. Parents shared that receiving weekly food had made a big difference during these challenging times.

The programme enabled us to provide a range of activities to support child development. This included a herb garden, where children were able to take pride, grow their own herbs, and learn where their food comes from, Zumba and yoga sessions, where children took part in multi-sensory, interactive classes enabling them to keep physically active, as well as singing sessions and provided by a qualified musician.

On the last day of our programme we provided a safe, social distancing carnival/circus show for families to either physically attend or to virtually join via zoom.

What else would you like to share about the programme?

One parent said: “The Summer meals really helped us as a family, saving money, it has been really beneficial”. Another said: “The Zoom activities and workshops were amazing”.

We believe the programme was a huge success and extremely beneficial for the families who attended. The programme was a great resource, and had a positive impact on the overall well-being of the families that attended.